By Chris Raschka
So, you must be a sardine?
Once there has been a fish named Arlene, who desired to be a sardine. She desired to be a sardine like the silvery, salty fish that you simply see in these little tins on the grocery store.
With the daring brushstrokes of his bright illustrations, Chris Raschka follows Arlene’s trip from a fjord to a major web to a briny bathtub aboard a fishing boat. And he finds simply how one can get packed like a sardine!
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Extra resources for Arlene Sardine
The plot is frequently tinged with suggestions of supernatural or unnatural influence, although in the true Gothic novel, the supernatural events are explained away, inevitably unmasked as the creations of a protagonist’s overactive imagination or the productions of malevolent, and very human, characters. In the Andrews books, the uncanny is explained, as it is in Ann Radcliffe’s novels. Frightening noises are attributed to perfectly natural causes, and any apparently genuine occult interference is found only in the nightmares that plague some characters.
PLOT DEVICES The plot devices associated with Gothic fiction have their origins as far back as the landscape poetry of the sixteenth century, although they became fictional staples through the works of Walpole and Radcliffe and their imitators. Admirers of the genre expect from the Gothic certain staples of narrative development: amnesia, overheard conversations, forbidden rooms, unacknowledged offspring, lost jewelry or other treasure. The natural world can heal or destroy, domestic settings conceal sources of evil, and when the events of the plot become too complicated, an improbably contrived solution is quite appropriate.
Although in her novels the master of the house is the source of the heroine’s fears and is largely responsible for her emotional and physical travail, his status as head of the family precludes his ever marrying her. Nevertheless, his dominance is absolute and long-lasting. Just how farreaching his control is becomes clear when the heroine marries, and her 32 V. C. Andrews new husband falls under the spell of the master of the house. Instead of rescuing the heroine and taking her away from the site of her terror, the man she loves surrenders his personal independence and himself becomes a kind of prisoner of the house and its master.
Arlene Sardine by Chris Raschka
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