A little something from the Art Department. The suit isn’t as fitted as I’d like and I would never wear that tie in a million years, but I’m certainly looking presidential. Assistant Director Bill Mizel, on the other hand, is looking positively old-timey in his portrait. Hell, he was so delighted with James Robbins’ work that he couldn’t stop giggling for most of the afternoon…
Another set pic sure to get the boards buzzing.
Are you ready?
Wait for it…
And some book club discussion on The Devil’s Alphabet (spoilers abound!). But first – post your questions for author Daryl Gregory!
Ponytail writes: “I was more than half way through when I made a connection with the alphabet part: A = Argos, B = Betas, C = Charlies…”
Answer: Holy smokes! I didn’t even realize this until your comment. Which leads me to wonder about the second wave of mutations and whether they were the same sub-groups or if we’d moved on to D, E, and F.
Ponytail also writes: “Sure wish this book had simple quick sketches of the three groups.”
Answer: I had an easy enough time imagining the Argos and Charlies, but had a harder time visualizing the seal-like Betas.
Ponytail writes: “Number one was what caused the disease? I’ll vote for aliens or a virus from a parallel universe.”
Answer: Although the question is never answered, this is certainly the theory that is given the most weight. I even wondered whether it was one space-time breech responsible for releasing three different viruses responsible for mutating its victims into three different alien-looking life forms.
Ponytail also writes: “Was Aunt Rhonda good or bad? Is she really taking care of them or does she have a personal agenda to get rich off of them?”
Answer: Great question for Daryl. For my part, I loved the Aunt Rhonda character and had no doubt that the community – and her fellow Charlies in particular – were better off because of her. Whether she personally benefited more than the others – I’m not sure. In Rhonda’s case, I felt that power was her reward whether it stemmed from her position as town mayor, her leadership of the Charlies, or the money she made off “the vintage” that allowed her to solidify her role.
Ponytail also writes: “Paxton finally breaking into JoLynn’s computer (I was sure the password was “Paxton”!) to find…what? Aunt Rhonda making lots of money? I didn’t see any answers there.”
Answer: Paxton was investigating the possibility that Aunt Rhonda’s shady practices may have cost Jo Lynn her life. Was she silenced for finding out the truth? That’s what it certainly looked like – but it turned out the circumstances surrounding his friend’s death were far more shocking.
Ponytail also writes: “The government seriously acting like they were going to exterminate them all…but not.”
Answer: I think the military’s goal was not extermination but containment. Moving against the victims of a plague would have been a PR disaster, something the military was well aware of – that Aunt Rhonda sought to exploit.
Ponytail also writes: “The twins running away and hiding…but why?”
Answer: They didn’t want to leave Switchcreek – which is what Tommy and Rhonda had planned for them.
Ponytail also writes: “Zeke and his wife were main characters…then suddenly not (if you know what I mean!).”
Answer: This one took me by surprise. I was actually expecting them to make a reappearance later in the book with a reveal that the military had captured them (for experimental purposes) and had concocted a cover story to explain away their disappearance.
Ponytail also writes: “Looks like Paxton is going to stay…but then he leaves.”
Answer: I wonder how much of Paxton’s desire to stay was actually “the vintage” talking.
Ponytail also writes: “The twins and their mother…a cover up?”
Answer: Insofar as the twins are concerned, yes. Paxton learns the truth but realizes nothing will be gained by going public so allows everyone to assume Jo Lynn did commit suicide.
Ponytail also writes: “I don’t think Paxton elected to leave town many years ago. I think his strick preacher father made him go after finding out about his relationship with Zeke and JoLynn.”
Answer: His father may have pressured him, but I got the sense that Paxton wasn’t unwilling.
Rebecca H writes: “I admit, I laughed out loud at that little word-bomb.”
Answer: Agreed. One of the things I appreciated about the book was its sense of humor.