The diversity of the characters

Use this forum to discuss the February 2019 Book of the month, "The Warramunga's War" by Greg Kater.
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Ever_Reading
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Re: The diversity of the characters

Post by Ever_Reading » 10 Feb 2019, 13:18

fictaddict wrote:
08 Feb 2019, 16:00
It always irks me when characters go to another country (especially in a historical novel), and meet people who talk and act just like modern-day Americans. It makes me think the author has never traveled.
Me too! It's irritating and amateur, to say the least. I'm glad that wasn't the case with this book.
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Post by Ever_Reading » 10 Feb 2019, 13:21

Anna Maria 86 wrote:
08 Feb 2019, 18:42
I really liked the diversity. At uni I went to an exchange program, and it was amazing to all of a sudden find myself in a room with people of at least 10 different nationalities. As to the mother tongues used, I found it to be more realistic. Besides, they were only a couple of words or phrases that you could easily understand and remember, so it didn't disturb the flow.
Exchange programmes are the best. I'm glad you enjoyed it. And you are right. Kater included the different languages in a way that did not disrupt the flow, which I liked.
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Post by Ever_Reading » 10 Feb 2019, 13:24

Cardinalsparrow wrote:
10 Feb 2019, 03:46
I like the diversity, it exposes the reader to other cultures which is a great ingredient for improving tolerance among people.
I'm with you on that one. Diverse books play such a crucial role in getting people to accept people from different cultures.
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Post by skindrukas » 10 Feb 2019, 13:27

Chikari wrote:
08 Feb 2019, 01:46
The diversity in The Warramunga's War definitely enhanced the read for me! I love learning about different cultures and the way other people live and I find that both fiction and non-fiction having diversity in characters is a great way to educate others. Of course, the author has to be careful not to fall into typical stereotypes for people either.
I love reading historical fiction, I love to travel too and I know that the author is a traveler. I haven't read this book yet, I have read a lot of good comments about it though and was wanting to check this book series anyway. But your comment left a positive and intriguing question if the characters in this book are created according to stereotypes or not, and how much? As a traveler myself, I don't believe one can totally ignore the stereotypes as there is some truth in them. I think, what matters in creating the characters is what one builds around a certain stereotype. If the character is only a representation of a stereotype - than there's a problem.
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Post by skindrukas » 10 Feb 2019, 13:32

Anyway, building a good story with many well developed characters is a wonderful talent. I admire that a lot in books. I might not even like the topic or a genre, but if the characters are many and flawless - I can't resist giving it a credit.
The temple bell stops but I still hear the sound coming out of the flowers. --- Matsuo Basho

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Post by BelleReadsNietzsche » 10 Feb 2019, 14:32

I think we often forget that diversity existed in history, especially in war! I liked the book's attention to the fact that diverse people were involved in WW2.
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Post by CambaReviewer » 10 Feb 2019, 15:49

I did not find the diversity distracting. if anything, it added to my enjoyment of the book. The truth is that the world is a diverse place and the fact that a book reflects this truth is a plus for me.

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Post by jhalwix » 11 Feb 2019, 09:13

I liked the diversity amongst the characters. It's important that diversity is shown in literature and it enhances the experiences for the reader.

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Post by Ever_Reading » 11 Feb 2019, 11:58

skindrukas wrote:
10 Feb 2019, 13:32
Anyway, building a good story with many well developed characters is a wonderful talent. I admire that a lot in books. I might not even like the topic or a genre, but if the characters are many and flawless - I can't resist giving it a credit.
I know what you mean, Characters can easily make or break a book. They are usually the ones we remember long after we have forgotten what the plot was about.
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Post by Ever_Reading » 11 Feb 2019, 12:01

BelleReadsNietzsche wrote:
10 Feb 2019, 14:32
I think we often forget that diversity existed in history, especially in war! I liked the book's attention to the fact that diverse people were involved in WW2.
That is very true. Different races and nationalities didn't just pop up a couple of years ago; they've always been there. I also love that the book took that angle. :D
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Post by Meliha » 11 Feb 2019, 14:21

I love diversity, though sticking to one language can work just as well, except when one character is lost due to a language barrier. In this case, I think it's good to use other languages as it helps the reader (unless they know the language) to sympathise with the character.

But since we are on the topic of diversity, I find that a group of friends is never so diverse in real life. From what I've seen, I'd say people pick up each other's gestures, let alone other traits, without even noticing it. And a group will distance an individual that doesn't 'fit in'. It's fascinating stuff. So diversity only works in stories where the characters are not close friends.

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Post by NL Hartje » 11 Feb 2019, 16:46

Chikari wrote:
08 Feb 2019, 01:46
The diversity in The Warramunga's War definitely enhanced the read for me! I love learning about different cultures and the way other people live and I find that both fiction and non-fiction having diversity in characters is a great way to educate others. Of course, the author has to be careful not to fall into typical stereotypes for people either.
I, too, find the culture and daily routines of people to be the most interesting part of diverse inclusions. For me, this is definitely a plus to the book!
“So the writer who breeds more words than he needs, is making a chore for the reader who reads.”
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Post by Hannahberry » 11 Feb 2019, 17:23

Ever_Reading wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 01:53
From Australia to Egypt and back, The Warramunga's War introduces a wide range of characters. More than the Warramunga, one also meets French, English, Arab, Australian, Czech, and German characters. At times, Kater even allows these characters to say phrases in their native tongues.

Did you find this distracting as you were reading, or did it enhance the book for you? Also, what are your thoughts on how diversity is portrayed in the book, in general?
I like it when there are certain phrases included in books in different languages. I think it builds upon the layers. I read a book recently called "The Girl in the Road" and there were lots of phrases in Indian included and I really liked this.

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Post by Katherine Smith » 12 Feb 2019, 17:41

I like that the author has the characters talk in their native tongues because it makes the characters seem more realistic. I like that the author did his homework about the backgrounds and the different dialects in each setting. I believe that including different countries makes the reader feel like they are traveling without having to board a plane.
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Post by Sirajuddin » 14 Feb 2019, 08:49

The diversity of the characters always adds an element of curiosity for the readers and if the characters say phrases in their native language, so in that way, we can at least learn some phrases from other languages also.

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