Anyone feel sorry for Alex?

Use this forum to discuss the April 2018 Book of the Month, "Ironbark Hill" by Jennie Linnane
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Zain A Blade
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Re: Anyone feel sorry for Alex?

Post by Zain A Blade »

I don't believe that others should be responsible for helping us reform our character or take control of our lives. This is solely up to the individual, no one is obliged to feel sorry for Alex or to help him with his alcoholism. When we choose to love ourselves and be a hero to ourselves, that is when help and support appears.
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Post by Nmesoma »

I personally don't believe that there's a sort of broken that can never be fixed or someone was too broken because Alex wasn't. He just doesn't know how to get back on his feet and put his life back on track, he doesn't have the zeal to believe in life and in the end, it ended him. He was bad, he was mean to kids and occasionally hit them but I wish he had gotten a second chance, everyone deserves a replay at life.
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Post by AWANDO OGUTU »

Yes, it's a pity to see parent child relationship getting broken for whatever reason. Alex ought to have been given a second chance to prove his worth.
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Post by Cardinalsparrow »

One might feel sorry for him because alcohol has enslaved him but then, he gave himself to alcoholism
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Post by Lunastella »

I´m not really sorry for him. I do believe in second chances, but Irma gave him the chance to get better and overcome his alcoholism. And he didn´t take it. I really can empathize with Natalie. I´m not saying he´s a monster, but people have to be responsible for the consequences of their actions, even if they were driven by alcohol and he didn´t earn Natalie´s respect, on the contrary, he abused her mercilessly. I do feel sorry for his kids, though, not only because they lost a father but because of the awful example they received.
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Post by ReviewerDiksha »

I don't think he was a TOTAL monster. As you said, he loved his children and alcoholism is was made him a completely different person. But I don't believe it justifiable for the way he treated Natalie. Okay, he didn't like her because she wasn't his. But nothing in the world can justify the physical abuse he put her through. I could understand Natalie's emotions as Alex struggled for his life, and she would have saved her if there was more time. But I don't really blame her. God knows what I would have done if I was in her shoes.
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Post by Abiba Alice »

Hmmm.... :eusa-think:
I don't know. I feel that everybody deserves a second chance but I also believe that, their some bad people in this world and some just can't be saved. Maybe he deserved it.
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Post by avantkristine »

I personally don't feel very much sympathy for Alex. He may have been a good father to his own children, but he always hated Natalie and Joey, because he was enemies with their father. I think the glimpses we had into Alex and Johnny's boyhood scuffles shows that Alex was never a very nice person. He only cared about getting the girl he wanted and probably cared very little about Johnny's death. I thought it was a fitting part of the story that he die, although I expected Natalie's responsibility for it to be a little more direct. She preaches about vengeance throughout the story, but in the end it was more of an accident. I pictured the moment as an out-of-body experience; of course she was going to pause and think about letting him die after all he had done to her, but I truly believe she meant to save him. She just waited too long, too caught up in painful memories and hatred for this abusive monster. Either way, I think he deserved to die, and it was a crucial for Natalie and her family's happiness that he did.
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Post by sarahmarlowe »

I don't. Not at all.

I know. Alcohol is a difficult demon to get away from. I shouldn't be so judgmental.

However, he was a mean, abusive, selfish, spiteful man. I didn't feel sorry for him as he struggled against the current. I did feel sorry that Natalie had to make the decision that she had to make. She was put in a bad position.
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Post by linham02660 »

I felt slightly sorry for Alex. He didn't have much of a start in life and the drinking problem definitely did not help. Life is all about choice and he made his. I wished Natalie had shown mercy when he was drowning if only to save her own misery later from guilt.
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Post by Bluebird03 »

I did manage to scrape up a bit of pity for Alex, since he had lost his son. But reading of the constant abuse that he heaped on Natalie and the family- and their animals made it pretty difficult to feel sorry for him for very long.
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Post by ElizaBeth Adams »

I believe it's totally okay to have compassion on Alex. We've all made bad choices and are only a few bad choices away from going down a path with devastating consequences. On the other hand, Alex was only a few choices away from choosing a healthier lifestyle. It did not appear that he would've, but the fact remains that he could've. While we want to classify people as purely evil and purely good, in reality no-one is 100% either of these things. If I knew Alex personally, I certainly wouldn't trust him without a huge pile of evidence of changed behavior, but I would continue to hope that he would choose higher ground and work on being the better version of himself.
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Post by Prisallen »

Alex had his chances to get sober and to do better, but, it didn't last long. I don't think he would have changed if Natalie had saved him from drowning. Therefore, I don't feel a lot of empathy for him.
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Post by LyorBoone »

I thought of him as a sort of Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Hyde. We mostly hear about his evil half because Natalie can’t see much more than that. It’s sad to think about him struggling to be better and failing, and his problems all stem from a lost child. He seems like a guy that could easily be a friend, but you would be shocked to discover the details of his home life. He’s character that hangs out in the gray area.
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Post by MsH2k »

I pity the reasons that he chose alcohol as a crutch, but he made life miserable for others.
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