Monday, April 8, 2013

Imagination Running Away with you

Often times my imagination gets the better of me, while reading a book, or watching a movie I suddenly cannot sit alone in my room with the lights off, or run from the bathroom and launch onto my bed for fear that something is following me but if I can get to my bed I may be safe. I know this is irrational, I know that there is nothing in my townhouse that is lurking in dark corners, or around campus at night, but it doesn't make me feel more safe. I find myself often having to stop myself from thinking, take a few breaths, and realize that the movement I saw, was my scarf moving, or a hanging on my wall, or a brach swaying in the wind, and not any sort of demon at all.

The book Quaker City is all about this imagination running away, the villains, and sorcerers, and death all lurking in the dark, the nightmare becoming real. It is in reading a book like this that the sensation of fear, and superstition of what may be lurking around corners becomes real. Once you really let yourself become immersed in the book do you realize that your imagination takes it and runs. The city of Philadelphia takes on a whole new persona, and the furniture and familiar rooms of a place, are no longer comforting or familiar, they are lurking.

Even the characters are not something to be trusted or understood, "The truth is, there were two Lorrimers in one. There was a careless, dashing, handsome fellow ho could kill a basket of champagne with any body. . .And then there was the tall, handsome man, with a thoughtful countenance, and a keep, dark hazel eye, who would sit down by the side of an innocent woman, and whisper in her ear." (page 89). One part of Lorrimer is good and friendly and another aspect of him is seducing woman and appearing in dark shadows, our imagination can just run away with the possibilities of what he is capable of.

It seems as if nothing can be trusted, "One, from the old State House clock, one. There is a wild music in the sound of that old bell. It rings like the voice of a warning spirit, when heard in the silence of the night." (page 346). It is hard to see if this book is so scary and enticing to readers because the clocks and characters here are part of something that is always changing and seems to be evil. Or maybe it is just the characters imaginations running away themselves and us as readers are getting swept up in the whole captivating story letting it take on another quality of fear and suspense. 

1 comment:

  1. oh Anna I love this idea! And we didn't really talk about it much at all... imagination running away from us, for better or worse. Damn. We should have talked more about the pleasures of this sort of reading experience!