Headscratchers / The Inkworld Trilogy

New entries on the bottom.

    open/close all folders 

    Sadistic kill watching 

  • Early in Inkheart, when Dustfinger is explaining to Meggie about Capricorn's "evilness" he uses an analogy about Capricorn feeding a bird to a cat and enjoying it, suggesting that...this makes him the worst thing since Hitler? Huh? Guess it's okay then to kill and/or imprison anyone who likes watching the carnage on nature shows, who owns a pet snake, or hell, all those naturalists out there who go out and observe all the big mean carnivores tearing apart the sweet little herbivores. I mean, those naturalists probably wouldn't be out there if they didn't enjoy it, even a little. Mm, sorry Funke, I think you took it a little far this time.
    • I agree, though I suppose what the author meant was that Capricorn enjoyed to watch out of sheer sadism, while naturalists and so do it to study (though obviously there might be exceptions)
    • Er, you forgot the key words. Enjoying it. People who like to watch animals being torn apart out of sheer sadism (like the troper above said) are generally messed-up people. After all, one of the big signs that someone is going to be a physco serial killer is loving to torture small animals. Actually, I personally am disturbed that the original troper thinks people enjoying watching small animals be torn apart is okay behavior.
    • Well, I am a borderline sociopath, and I have always enjoyed watching animals fighting and killing each other, but I am by no means crazy or stupid enough to go around shooting people like a madwoman. I just like watching animals tearing each other apart in nature documentaries, or seeing my cat attack the birds in the yard. It just struck me as ridiculous and a tad offensive on Funke's part that such a minor thing should, in her mind, indicate a complete unhinged personality. For the record, it doesn't. Just because mental instability is more common in sociopaths than non-sociopaths does not mean the two are mutually exclusive. (Also, you're right about Unfortunate Implications. Changing it to Felony Misdemeanor. Thanks.)
    • Being a sociopath doesn't imply being a crazed Knife Nut or gunman. It just means a basic lack of a conscience and enjoyment of other's suffering. Your average crazed gunman is, in fact, less of a sociopath than a guard that works on death row because he likes watching the executions.
    • Are you honestly getting offended about people not liking it when other people enjoy watching animals kill each other? Anyway Funke isn't saying that watching animals killing each other and enjoying it makes someone a sadist it's just one of the many elements of his personality that make him like that and as for Dustfinger choosing to tell Meggie that out of a few things it's going to make quite an impression on a young girl.
    • Thank you troper above. This is just one example of what Capricorn is like. You also have to keep in mind who's saying it, and to whom it is being said. At this point in the book Meggie is still childlike and innocent, and Dustfinger is trying to frighten her while on the other hand he probably is toning down his statement; being the villian, I'm sure Capricorn is capable of doing much more to defenseless little animals. It can also be taken as a metaphor,in which Meggie=bird, showing that Capricorn would feel no remorse over killing her. That being said, the conversation is very realistic.
  • And Dustfinger said Capricorn would specifically give the bird to the cat to tear apart. Liking to watch animals hunt and kill each other is one thing, but actively putting another living creature in danger just for kicks is generally not something good people do.

    Third Novel 

  • Speaking as someone who enjoyed the series, I'm now very curious as to why others hate the third novel so much.
    • Personally, I disliked how Meggie was put on the back burner. She's essentially been our protagonist for the past two books, and now we get a few chapters of her being romantic with an out of the blue character. Perhaps that's just me.
    • Seconded. It's annoying that the only useful thing that Meggie does in the third book is call something out of a book once...and even then Darius could have easily done it instead. Then there was Doria...
    • I haven't read the third book, but I know what happens, so I don't intend to. For me, the moment I decided I wouldn't was when I read a Q&A with the author and, when asked if she would write anymore books, she responded that she would like to explore what happens to Meggia and Doria. No mention of Farid, despite him being just as important as Meggie in Inkspell, arguably getting more attention. I don't like him apparently being shoved into the background because the author decided she wanted her protagonist with someone else. And again, the romance. I don't like romance much anyway, so discovering that I forced my way through so much of it only for that particular love story to come to nothing is quite infuriating.
    • Most teenage relationships don't last and there were pretty clear reasons for it. Much as I liked the characters it's not unrealistic for it to end like that. I can still understand why it was frustrating.
    • I also think that the dropping of Farid by Meddie was reasonable; again, it was a teenage relationship, and also Farid was annoyingly obsessed with Dustfinger, and went off kissing other girls the whole time anyway. I loved Inkheart but hated the other two, especially Inkdeath. Dustfinger was my main problem - in the first book he was one of my favourite characters of all time, but in the second book he changed. All of his established flaws went out the window. Originally he was not big on children, and also quite selfish, but now he's all fatherly towards Farid and even sacrificing himself for him - I'm not saying that character development is bad, and it makes sense for him to get used to Farid and like him after the year or so that passes between the first and second, but he was just too good after that. And then there was that ridiculous business where he was ressurrected. It was just... awful. Mo was my next biggest problem - he really, really annoyed me as the Bluejay - and pretty much every other character drove me nuts at some point, so in the end I hated them all. Add in the terrible movie and I lost my enthusiasm for the first book too.

    English Translation 

  • Does anyone know why the English translation changed the title of Tintenblut to Inkspell? (It's not the only translation to do this, either; the Swedish one is titled Bläckmagi ["ink-magic"]). It also causes the almost-Title Drop in the Adderhead's book to make a bit less sense. The only reason I can possibly think of is that the translators thought that the word "blood" was inappropriate for the title of a YA novel. Quite apart from this being a stupid reason, they didn't have a problem with titling the third book Inkdeath.

    "Mo" abbreviation 

  • Isn't "Mo" usually an abbreviation for a female name? Maybe Cornelia Funke, being German, didn't know that.
    • Aren't Mo and Meggie German? I always presumed they were. They're certainly from somewhere around there, considering they drive to Italy to go to Elinor's. Maybe it's a guy's name in Germany.
    • As someone who speaks English as a first language and doesn't know a lick of German I can't think of any female name where "Mo" would be a nickname. However, "Mo" as short for Mortimer makes perfect sense to me - though "Mort" would be my first choice.
    • "Mo" could be an abbreviation for Monica or Monique. Maybe "Mo" is a common nickname for "Mortimer" in German.
    • Neither Mo nor Mortimer or Meggie are common names in German at all and "Mo" seems gender neutral to me (native German speaker). The author just has a thing for crazy names.
    • Moritz, while a bit old fashioned, is a typical german boys name though, and I have heard that being shortened to Mo plenty of times. It's not outrageous to think Meggie would call her dad Mo.

    Altering the story 

  • In Inkheart, as a minor plot point, Fenoglio writes a passage about Hans Christian Anderson's little tin soldier so that Meggie can read him home. But in Inkspell, Orpheus makes it quite clear that you can only use words that the original author already used to alter a story. Either Fenoglio accidentally used all the right words, or Orpheus is wrong— except that this is never explained in the story. You could argue that it's actually saying something about Orpheus and his inability to be original (also, it seems like none of the other readers are able to write new things either, so this might be something they all suffer from). Then again, Orpheus is pretty clear that you can't read yourself into a book either— which Meggie does shortly after he says this— so maybe Cornelia Funke is just bad at keeping track of her established rules.

    Silvertongue Powers 
  • When Mo explains his ability to read characters out of books, he explains that he unknowingly read his wife into Inkheart when he read Capricorn and his men out of it. However, when Meggie reads Tinkerbell out of Peter Pan, she doesn't seem to have that affect her. So how is it that Meggie didn't accidentally read someone or something into the book?