The Sorcerer's Successor is one of the most representative works of the famous New Zealand children's book writer Margaret Mahy (1936- ). For this work, she won the British Carnegie Prize for Literature in 1982. In this work, Mei Xi fully demonstrated her talents in novel plot structure and language shaping. She waved the "magic wand" in her hand with ease, guiding young readers to experience a fascinating "magic" performance.
It is no exaggeration to say that Mei Xi is the magician of the plot structure. In the book, she took the young readers to play a game, a guessing game - who is the successor of the magician. She arranged for Barney to appear first, focusing on pen and ink, and designing a series of mysterious, incredible, and slightly terrifying plots around him, making readers mistakenly believe that Barney must be inseparable from some mysterious magic. However, as the story unfolds, readers will doubt the initial judgment. Is the real magician someone else? Mei Xi made a big joke to lead readers astray, and then turned the page, but she refused to tell the real successor of the magician directly, but deliberately sold off and set up suspense to let smart readers To think, to guess, and when you have a firm answer in your heart, when you are verifying step by step, she seems to have guessed your mind, and when you are immersed in the fierce conflicts of the story, she suddenly takes over the real magician. People are pushed to the front of the stage to reveal the mystery, thus bringing the story to a climax. This kind of plot arrangement, hidden and full of mystery, is hard to explain and must be read in one breath.
I have to say that Mei Xi is well versed in the psychology of young readers. She uses the mysterious element of "ghost" to capture the children's attention. With a terrifying atmosphere. However, Mei Xi is quite skillful in grasping the scale, and the narrative does not exaggerate, but makes you feel a little playful in the mystery, and humorous and ridiculed in the fear, which not only tightly grasps the hearts of the children, but also does not Will use terror to reduce the courage and fun of their adventures.
Meixi's superb is also that she is not "acting" alone, but fully arouses the enthusiasm of readers and allows them to enter an immersive experience. In addition to using Barney's experience of fear as a bright thread throughout the text, the book also arranges another clue, occasionally revealing some clues, and gradually forming a complete "evidence chain", allowing young readers to participate involuntarily, with suspicion, Guessing, looking for clues between the lines, and stripping the cocoons to confirm their inferences. The two clues alternate light and dark, intertwined and interspersed, making the story complicated and confusing, and when the mystery is revealed, it makes people feel reasonable. The interest of reading and the fun of detection make the whole reading process hearty and beautiful.
I have to say that Mei Xi is a master of storytelling, a master of character shaping, and a real magician of language. The judges of the British Carnegie Prize believe that the poetic, childlike, magical and supernatural elements of Meixi's language make her "a rare writer in the world who reshapes language."
Her little Barney is a stoic little boy. When Barney encounters a ghost, he "looks up at the sky to see if there is a ghost, but only sees a large blue sky pressing down on him heavily. Quickly look to the side, worried that you will be crushed into a flat gingerbread man, or a gingerbread man in a fat, flat-out school uniform." Just imagine how visual it is! However, the moment you smile, the smile freezes, and you can't help but feel sorry for this little boy. Barney is not a child favored by God. His mother died when he was born, and his father was too busy with work to take care of him. He went through a lot of hardships when he was young. This is a precocious child. In the torment of life, he has learned to hide his emotions and learn to be patient, but the innocence that belongs to the child is still there. Mei Xi is like a weaving master, she hides the complex emotions and the emotions she has placed on the characters in the warp and weft threads of the text. She pulls the end of the thread, and quietly affects your emotions.
The ghost was about to appear, and Barney "felt something strange going on in his head, like something was churning and opening, like a butterfly struggling to get rid of its chrysalis, trying to unwrap its wrinkled wing". This kind of uncontrolled feeling is almost never experienced by young readers, and it is very difficult to describe this abstract feeling. But Mei Xi found the right way to present it, using the appearance of a butterfly breaking out of its cocoon, to vividly show Barney's state of fear, resistance, but still unable to stop it.
Mei Xi wrote about her grandmother: "She looked so neat, so neat, like an antique doll that had been taken out of a glass box in a museum and displayed for the occasion. But her eyes were sharp. , looks hostile. Her wrinkles are also irregular, even a little messy, as if time has played a game of circle and cross on her face carelessly." Mei Xi has the ability of a magician, and a few strokes can make Grandma too stood up from the pages and came over. Her appearance became clearer and clearer, as if she was standing in front of you. Mei Xi used "circle and cross" to describe the messy wrinkles on Grandma's face. It was so expressive and different, which made people feel a little ridiculed and disliked. "Every wrinkle of hers is sullen. She's like a wall full of angry swear words." This is the grandmother in Tabitha's eyes, even her wrinkles are full of expressions and expressions Emotionally, he immediately expressed his disgust for the great-grandmother.
"The Magician's Successor"
An excellent writer must be a master of language, and Mei Xi is a top master. Her language gives a sense of "unfamiliarity" - using imagination and innovative thinking to reconstruct a language that makes us feel fresh and interesting to read. Gu Cheng said: "Habit is a thick cocoon of feeling, which makes both cold and heat tend to be numb." Therefore, Mei Xi does not use the usual way of expression. Her language has a vigorous vitality, which is unconventional and interesting. She seems to have a magical power to reshape the language. The words she writes are like bamboo shoots, which look very simple, but the underside of the bamboo shoots is tender, plump and fresh. You can even imagine that it grows into green bamboo. The graceful demeanor of the time.
Barney is a lovable little boy who lost his mother when he was a child, but was fortunate to meet Claire. Unlike the villainous stepmother in fairy tales, Claire gave Barney the love and warmth of her own mother. In addition to the meticulous care in life, she also taught Barney and respected and understood Barney. When Barney is hurt, she will feel distressed from the bottom of her heart; when Barney has something on her mind, she will try to enlighten her; when Barney is in danger, she will protect her regardless of her life. Barney is lucky to have such a great stepmother. In the story, Mei Xi used a lot of brush and ink to describe the interaction between the mother and son. For example, from Barney's worries about Claire's childbirth, he saw his dependence and love for his stepmother.