A Northern Light Essay

Jennifer Donnelly
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Storytelling was a tradition after meals. It was the only entertainment they could afford and, during the long winters, it helped to overcome the isolation. The whole family, she says, 'are born storytellers'. Her mother (in fact a German, orphaned during the war, who emigrated to the US) told her own stories too, and read to her. And the whole family read—there was a culture of reading when she grew up. 'I didn't think about it at the time, but I suppose that part time I was picking up the value of stories, the importance of early tradition.' And not only that. 'Hearing the older generation sit and talk, you absorb how to do pacing and suspense, and structure; how to hold your listeners rapt, how to deliver a good punch line.'

The ability to listen and hear the words talk was another thing...

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This section contains 681 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Northern Light Study Guide
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