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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:46 pm 
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Clan Fraser
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~liebs~ wrote:
My question: when Claire and Jamie returned to the Ridge, did the tenants still believe Jamie slept with Malva? Was Tom Christie's confession of Malva's murder known and/or believed by the tenants? DG, in naming the upcoming graphic novel THE EXILE, noted Jamie's continual state is one of the exile. It is gut-wrenching to watch Jamie become an exile on his own mountain... which is a place of exile from his homeland, Scotland. An exile within an exile. Ouch.


I did get the impression that the tenants had stopped associating with Jamie and stopped seeing Claire for medical problems. But it looked like they were starting to rebuild again with Bobby and Lizzie. Pretty pathetic after helping all of those people find places to live and ways to rebuild their lives.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 8:25 am 
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Lady Jayne wrote:
Laura wrote:
Lady Jayne wrote:
Malva may have started out as innocent, but she clearly knew that her accusations against Jaime would cause a great scandal and ruin his reputation. She could have chosen to accuse any of the male characters she slept with as the father of her baby, but she purposely chose to use Jaime and destroy his marriage in the process. All this after Claire took her under her wing and trained her how to treat patients and prepare medications. Malva was most likely infatuated with Jaime, who could blame her, and wanted to replace Claire as his wife and as healer of Fraser Ridge. Plan A was probably to get Jaime to sleep with her when he was so distraught over Claire's sickness, which was induced by Malva. When the poison did not work on her father and Claire, she went to plan B, and decided to lie about matters so that Jaime would have no choice but to support her. She was not repentant in the least.

Exactly.

Actually, accusing Jamie of fathering her child was Plan B.

Plan A was murdering Claire and her father. Malva went into the sin-eaters home and ~ with malice aforethought ~ gathered germs she knew could cause the death of Claire and Tom Christie. Murder in the First Degree. Malva knew she must murder her father ~ in addition to Claire ~ to achieve her goal of marrying Jamie, knowing he father would never allow such a match.

Malva, to me, is a very complex character. She is very severely traumatized: by her mother's actions and brutal death, by Tom Christie in attitude (she's the child of my wife ~ the witch and whore ~ to my brother) and by his very strong hand, and by her incestuous sexual relationship with her brother, Allan.

Can this excuse some of her behaviour? All of her behaviour? Claire learned of the truth of Malva, yet she still mourned, and mourned deeply.




You are correct , Laura.
Malva's Plan A was to murder Claire and Tom for once they were out of the picture, she could manipulate Jaime, or so she thought. Plan B was to get Jaime to lie with her so that she could convince him he was the child's father and Plan 3 was to falsely accuse Jaime so that Claire would leave him.

Malva was deeply disturbed and had been severely abused, which explains her behaviour, but does not excuse her actions. She could have turned to Claire for protection from Allan or chosen to marry Bobby and get away from Fraser's Ridge. Perhaps it was too late for her when she learned she was pregnant?


I think we are missing something here. Malva's plan was just to blame the child on someone else, hince the reason she took to sleeping with all those guys. Allen knew that would mean her father would marry her off and he did not want to loose her. He came up with the plan of getting Claire out of the way.I think Malca hated Tom enough to include him in the murder plot. The third plan was not to have Claire leave Jamie it was to extort money and possibly land from him so that she could go off with Allen and live.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 10:37 am 
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Clan Fraser
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Kelly wrote:
I think we are missing something here. Malva's plan was just to blame the child on someone else, hince the reason she took to sleeping with all those guys. Allen knew that would mean her father would marry her off and he did not want to loose her. He came up with the plan of getting Claire out of the way.I think Malca hated Tom enough to include him in the murder plot. The third plan was not to have Claire leave Jamie it was to extort money and possibly land from him so that she could go off with Allen and live.


Hi Kelly! :Melissa:

I think we are maybe mixing the different plots. From my reading, plot #1 ~ Germ Warfare ~ was Malva's personal plan to infect Claire and her father with the deadly germ. With her father and Claire both gone, she could make her play for Jamie. She knew her father would never agree to her marriage to Jamie, so she knew he needed to be out of the way for her plan to succeed. This plot #1 includes Malva's burning of the bones as a love philter.

Plot #2 ~ The Pregnancy Plan ~ was Allen's doing. You are correct, Malva did try to place fatherhood on someone other than Allen by having sex with Ian and Bobby Higgins (and others?). Allen coerced Malva into pinning the pregnancy on Jamie, hoping they would get enough $$ to leave the area and live peacefully together. Allen killed Malva when she told him she could no longer go through with the charade, because she loved Claire so much and couldn't stand to see her suffer any longer.

My problem is reconciling Malva #1 with Malva #2. Malva #1 is a cold-blooded murderer. With malice aforethought, she collected the germs and intentionally infected Claire and her father. When it appeared Claire would survive, she disfigured her by cutting off all of her hair. Malva #2 expresses remorse.... although we only hear this through Allen's recounting of Malva's intention to recant her story.

You can read two pieces by DG regarding Malva/Allen on the Yahoo group Outlandish Voices. I don't know if you need to be a member to access the files, but here are the links:
Why Did Ian Shoot Allen Christie?
Diana's Answers about the Box and Malva

DG's answers kind of confuse me a little. She is, I think, saying the Germ Warfare Plan was actually an outcropping of the Pregnancy Plan, but we know Malva got pregnant AFTER Claire recovered from her illness, because Claire tells us as she counts backwards. Malva did not get pregnant during Claire's illness. Additionally, DG is suggesting Malva was more concerned with killing Tom because of the pregnancy, and Claire was an afterthought?

*scratching head*

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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 12:49 pm 
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Clan Fraser
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Great outline of the events, Laura. I just hope that DG is not confusing the timeline again. For some reason, I had thought that Malva had gotten pregnant while Claire was ill and lay unconscious in bed. Malva probably just said that so that she could shed some doubt about Jamie's actions for who would truly know how far along she was with her pregnancy besides Malva.
I think both Malva and Allan are despicable. They carefully planned out their scheme knowing they would destroy so many lives and relationships. They both wanted Tom dead, for their personal reasons, but I think it was Malva who wanted Claire gone for good. She may have had a change of heart later on, which I find very hard to believe, but the evil intentions far outweighed any goodness she possessed.

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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 1:53 pm 
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Malva stated she got pregnant with Jamie's child while Claire was ill... but Claire later disproved this theory noting Malva was not pregnant "enough", i.e. Claire was ill in September (?) but Malva was 6 months along in May (?). I've got to finish Drums of Autumn, then Fiery Cross before I get to time-line notes on Breath of Snow... it could be awhile before I find the answer to this nagging question!

I am pretty darn sure, though, the bone-burning love philter was placed BEFORE Claire's illness.

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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 7:42 pm 
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In my recent reread of Breath, the love philter was before Claire's illness. However, Claire did see Malva leaning towards Jamie in the bedroom when she was having an out of body experience during her illness. She was on the verge of dying and saw Malva leaning towards Jamie and says "Oh no you don't" or something like that and then returns to her body. So, Malva's planning this before Claire's illness, but Allan proposes the idea and she gladly goes along with it. I think that later when she's exiled from Claire she realizes what she's missing in Claire's company.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2009 12:10 pm 
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Yes, Claire sees Malva leaning toward Jamie while she is having her NDE and says to herself, "No. That won't do." This is what brought her back to her body.

Interesting that we never see Claire afterward make any connection between her vision in the NDE and Malva's play for Jamie.

Malva was certainly planning on removing Claire so she could have Jamie at this stage. But was this part of her plan because she was already pregnant? Or was this plan prior to, and totally separate from, the pregnancy plan? I've got to read the whole book again to figure this one out!

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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2009 10:54 pm 
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Claire figures out that Malva became pregnant after her recovery and the NDE was during her illness. Tom Christie said that Malva always wanted material wealth and that Jamie personified that to her. So I think that the abuse by her brother had been ongoing in her life simultaneously with her lusting after Jamie.

The desperation of her pregnancy led her to the poisoning plan is my guess. Otherwise, she would have continued trying to seduce Jamie.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:27 pm 
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I have such mixed feelings about Malva Christie!! I wouldn't trust her as far as I could throw her, and yet I really feel sorry for the girl. We've seen again and again the inequality of women and men in the 18th century, especially in this book. Marsali and Claire's mistreatment by Hodgepile and crew, Bonnet's auction of women (Briana) to "gentlemen", Sadie Ferguson claiming to be a widow to have more rights than as an old maid. Malva I feel is another victim of 18th century abuse of women and girls. I think she is mentally ill as Constantino stated earlier. Maybe she had multiple personalities. She's been abused repeatedly, told she is the daughter of a witch. The mystique of the dead mother who people feared would be very attractive to a powerless (and power seeking) girl like Malva.

What she did to Claire and Jamie was horrible. I'm not sure it is unforgivable, at least from Claire's perspective. Although, maybe I say that because she is dead. I think Claire loved her and Malva craved Claire's approval. But Malva was probably horribly jealous of Claire, her "power", her freedom, her positive relationship with Jamie, her goodness. I believe Allan Christie. I think that Malva was going to divulge her scheme to Claire. I think she was all alone in the world. I think her confession would have been motivated by her selfishness, her loneliness.


Roger figures out the timeline too. He says Claire was sick in early September and the baby was concieved at the end(?) of November. He thinks he can see Jamie making a mistake once, in the midst of his grief, but not ever again. Thus he rules out any doubt that Jamie could be the father. Shame on him for doubting Jamie's loyalty to Claire!!!

I think it is interesting that Malva is the first "villian" in this series that we as readers get a little bit of background information on, at least as far as I can remember.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 11:27 am 
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Re-kilting this book, I found Jamie's conversation with Malva very curious in (yet!) another way - she seemed intrigued by the fact that Jamie was a Fraser of Lovat, and asked him if it was true. Why someone at her young age would be so interested in that is confusing me. Granted, everyone at that time spun the web of relatives immediately after meeting someone, and the Lovat line was one that was surely well known, but still. She reminds me in a lot of ways of Gellis - the ill-wish/love charm connection, fascination with life/death, willingness to incur her father's wrath in order to learn more about Claire's healing potions and methods - I don't think this was always done with good intentions, as we find out later in the book.

Her mother is also a mystery - she states that her mother and Allan's was the same woman, but then there is the separation from the family in Scotland, then the colonies, before their mother dies, as a 'witch', who also happens to enjoy reading for leisure, a trait Thomas Christie mentions to Claire earlier in the book. Could her mother have been a traveler, bent on the same intentions as Gellis?


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 10:05 pm 
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nina wrote:
Roger figures out the timeline too. He says Claire was sick in early September and the baby was concieved at the end(?) of November. He thinks he can see Jamie making a mistake once, in the midst of his grief, but not ever again. Thus he rules out any doubt that Jamie could be the father. Shame on him for doubting Jamie's loyalty to Claire!!!


I'm sorry but I still don't get how Roger or Ian could ever even wonder about Jamie's innocence. I found it a little aggravating that Ian didn't come forward and tell them about his experiences with Malva and even Roger knew her devious side. It seemed like most of them kept quiet to save their own necks and no one stood up for Jamie. If Ian had come forward, and he knew about Bobby, or Roger knew about Bobby, the whole plot would have unraveled. A little disappointed in wee Ian to say the least.


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:05 pm 
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Everything in this thread is great! I won't be saying anything new, but since I'm in the middle of reading about this right now, I just have to "talk" about it!

The first time I read BoSaA I did not see Malva as anything more than a nice girl. I was SHOCKED by her claim that Jamie had seduced her. Now that I'm re-reading, I am catching all kinds of little things that point to her NOT being nice.
Her fascination with ether is sinister this time around. It wasn't sinister the first time. Am I just dense or what?? When Bobby has his ether induced vision, I immediately thought--Oh, that's Malva! (I don't even remember reading that part the first time!) Now I'm at a part where Jamie is talking to Malva. I keep thinking "Jamie, RUN AWAY!"
I'm wondering how I could have missed it with Malva?
OH! I just thought of something. Of course I missed it. That's the whole point. EVERYONE missed it. Even Jamie and Claire. If I was shocked about the real Malva, well, they certainly were, too, to put it mildly.
DG is so good at this!!


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:51 am 
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Great thread! I was pondering over the same questions and came here!

When Claire was ill and having the out of body experience, she sees a woman with dark hair comforting Jamie. I had questions about Malva but this made alarm bells go off for me. Also, when Jamie walks with her - I also was thinking, "What are you doing?? Be careful!!"

All good points!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:55 am 
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I remember thinking how neat it was that Malva was so interested in medicine and that she would be a really important character later. Then I worried if Herself was going to kill off or remove Claire and was developing another healer to take care of the Ridge. I never saw Malva as a bad character coming!


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 Post subject: Re: Malva Christie
PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 3:07 pm 
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Clan Fraser
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Maybe I am odd but I saw Malva as suspicious from the beginning. I was suspicious of her and the ether, I saw her when Claire had her out of body experience. I didn't doubt her when she threatened Roger when he came upon her with Bobby. The only surprise for me was that she tried to kill Claire and Tom.

I wasn't even surprised that she had an incestuous relationship with her brother. None of that surprised me. Maybe I am more suspicious by nature but I just didn't see anything innocent about her.

I was shocked at the accusation only because I just couldn't see anyone believing it so I think I was more surprised that anyone actually thought it could be remotely true but then I know Jamie better than they do. :lol:

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