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History of Wolves


"Electrifying . . . as beautiful and as icy as the Minnesota woods where it's...
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Discuss History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund:
Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

Created: 11/18/17

Replies: 13

Posted Nov. 18, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

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Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

When Linda meets Paul and Patra for the first time after watching them through her window, she has a brief conversation with them before Patra invites her to walk home with them. Linda thinks: "It pleased me for reasons I could not explain to be part of the latter allegiance. I nodded, surprising myself." Does her interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?


Posted Nov. 26, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Tired Bookreader

Join Date: 08/19/11

Posts: 87

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

It would appear that Lily is an equal with a similar life situation. Patra is something Linda doesn’t fully understand; Linda is more intrigued than emotionally involved.


Posted Nov. 27, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 356

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I did think that there were mild suggestions of Linda feeling homosexual attraction, starting with the girl in the commune and continuing on to Linda's snuggling next to Patra.


Posted Nov. 28, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
JLPen77

Join Date: 02/05/16

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I think Linda was trying to sort out what it means to be a woman and come to terms with her own sexuality. Despite Lily being her own age, she saw her as more mature due to Lily's sexual experience, just as she saw Patra. They intrigued her, roused her curiosity about sexuality at a time when that is certainly developmentally appropriate. I think she wanted to learn from them both. The idea of being romantic interested is ambiguous perhaps because Linda is ambiguous herself; it is possible that she was simply trying to experience emotional intimacy and connection that comes with female friendships, but didn't quite know how to handle herself. Her isolation due to her emotionally distant parents and their odd lifestyle certainly did not prepare her for conventional relationships with her peers.


Posted Nov. 29, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
susiej

Join Date: 10/15/14

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I agree with JLPen77 that the life Linda lives with her parents certainly did not prepare her for a conventional relationship - and in fact, this is something she seems never to have obtained - and wanders about for a long while and even tells us at the end of that summer, for example, "There was no changing the loneliness. (269)
With this in mind, she is looking to others for guidance, and Patra, another adult, another mother, exemplifies emotional security and strength and care. Linda subconsciously looks to her for mothering, much as Paul does. She sees, in Paul, that to do so is normal. Meanwhile, Lily, a peer, is looking for much the same things, and Linda is attracted to her to see how she is managing and coping. I don't see romantic interest in either except as perhaps Linda, herself, becomes aware of such a thing through both of these women after not seeing it in her own home.


Posted Nov. 29, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ashleighs

Join Date: 11/13/17

Posts: 14

RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

JLPen77 hit the nail on the head in my opinion. The entire book demonstrates that Linda is completely lost when it comes to handling relationships outside of her home life. She's curious and unsure. Her communications and actions throughout the book, even when told from the adult-Linda timeframe, suggest that she's been very sheltered by her upbringing.


Posted Nov. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rivkahh

Join Date: 05/04/15

Posts: 10

RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I agree that any romantic feelings are subliminal and confused, and that because of her upbringing Linda is searching for relationships that are missing in her life.


Posted Nov. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
joanr

Join Date: 04/25/12

Posts: 39

RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I agree with several of the comments. Linda's world is a lonely one: shunned by her classmates as a freak, living with kind but distant parents, and encompassed by the cold, isolated Minnesota landscape, she is trying to understand how to live in the world with others. That, combined with her age, makes her very curious about others who are different. Patra is a 'city' woman, married, happy and outgoing. Lily is beautiful and someone who attracts the boys without any effort. Linda isn't interested romantically in either, but she does try to get close to each of them to learn more.


Posted Nov. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
judyg

Join Date: 04/20/11

Posts: 16

RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I agree with JLPen77 as well--well said!


Posted Dec. 04, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Savanna

Join Date: 08/04/15

Posts: 8

RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I agree wholeheartedly with Joanr. Linda is looking for role models, looking to fit in - in school, at home, in life. Those two women are like "armor" to try on...to see if they fit, if they suit her, if they help comprehend and deal with life.


Posted Dec. 04, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Maggie

Join Date: 01/01/16

Posts: 112

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

Linda is extremely lonesome and has had a strange upbringing with not a lot of love. Feels like she does not fit in with classmates. Now with Patra she finally feels like she has a family or at least a friend. Someone who cares about her. Lily is having her own problems so I think Linda feels that perhaps they have something in common.


Posted Dec. 04, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
marganna

Join Date: 10/14/11

Posts: 111

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I don't think the author was clear on what she wanted to portray. There were moments when I could sense some of Linda's confused feelings but how they fit into the story was never clear to me. Linda was lonely, did not fit in with her peers, was isolated, ridiculed by her mother, not appreciated by anyone, raised in an alternative life style. It is understandable she would be searching for role models & where she could fit in.


Posted Dec. 14, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
reene

Join Date: 02/18/15

Posts: 311

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

Linda's interest in Patra and Lily is very different. When she first meets Patra it is the first time that she actually sees a family relationship. She grew up in a commune, and then after the commune broke up, her parents continued to live in the same manner. For Linda. her only relationship or company was often that of the dogs. Needless to say, she was fascinated by the give and take of a family. With Lily, Linda was more or less looking for a friend, someone who might accept her as a friend. The rest of the school had labelled her a freak, maybe Lily, who also was an outcast could make friends. Linda was so far from understanding a sexual relationship, she was just trying on friend, relief from the loneliness.


Posted Dec. 18, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
acstrine

Join Date: 02/06/17

Posts: 59

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RE: Does Linda's interest in Patra differ from her interest in Lily, and if so, in what way? Does Linda seem interested romantically in either of these characters?

I do not think think the interest in either Patra or Lily was romantic. Linda was emotionally stunted. She knew very little about authentic interactions with others based on her relationship (or lack thereof) with her own parents. Linda was an observer and learned how to behave by watching others. Based on some of their life similarities, Lily was a safe person for Linda to explore a friendship with. Petra offered the warmth, security, and love that was missing from Linda's own home. Linda spent so much time in the cabin because she found something she wanted to be a part of.


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