Reader's Den: Wrap-up of "The Servants" by M.M. Smith
Thank you for participating in our online discussion of The Servants. You put forward some excellent insights and raised challenging points. I hope you enjoyed the book as much I did. I first read it years ago, re-read it last year, and — for the purposes of this discussion — read it again last month. On each reading, I found myself unwrapping another revelation or wondering about another mystery.
The essential metaphors become gradually apparent. The co-relation between Mark's mother's health and the secrets of the basement; the hierarchical arrangements of the staff; the essential, simple chores that are extremely important — these tell us about ourselves, our bodies, our well-being, and place in the world. The period details and the natural details — the weather and the ocean play their parts — add to the reader's experience.
This book can be appreciated by anybody age 12 and older. As a coming-of-age novel, it is one of the best. I hope our discussion encourages people to try it, and to those who did read it — a second reading will reveal more insights, I promise!