Aveneu Park, Starling, Australia

The Ned’s letters to Jinx, Miss. sadie’s

The novel Moon over Manifest is written in multiple layers and told in four different ways. But why? The reason behind this is to show multiple times and views of the story. It helps readers better understand the story when it’s told in multiple perspectives. Sometimes, one perspective isn’t good enough to understand the whole story. When it’s told in multiple layers with different perspectives, you get a better view of the whole story.  Of course, all of the stories have something to do with the main story, but they are all written in different ways to show every side of the story to make it easier to understand. Moon Over Manifest is told in the perspective of Hattie Mae’s articles, Ned’s letters to Jinx, Miss. sadie’s stories, and the main story told by Abilene. First is Abilene’s story which is the main story.  Abilene’s part of the story is told in the first person. Abilene is the main character, at least in this storyline, and readers see everything through her eyes, or imagination, as the case may be: “I closed my eyes to the dusty countryside and imagined the sign I knew only from stories”(Chapter 1, Page 1). All the other stories in the book are being told to her, and the primary sources are things she’s reading. Such as Ned’s letters.  In her story view, she is wondering why her father, Gideon, sent her away for the summer to Manifest. Throughout the whole book she is finding different clue and stuff that give her a better idea and understanding of why he had sent her to Manifest. Not only that, why Manifest? What were his connections to manifest? While she is staying in one of shady’s rooms, she says, “Since Gideon had stayed with Shady, maybe this had been his room. Maybe I’d found Gideon’s footprints after all.”(Chapter 3, Page 22). A little later in the book, she finds one of Ned’s letters. He writes all about the war that’s going on, and spies, and how the spies are giving informations to the Germans. Spies? War? She thinks about what he is talking about. At the end of the letter, it said, “So, remember, be on the alert. Keep your eyes and ears open. THE RATTLER is watching.”(Chapter 6, Page 37). Who’s THE RATTLER? When she tells her friends about this, they all go on an adventure to find out who the Rattler was. And to even see if they could actually find him! Abilene and her friends trying to find out who the Rattler was is a big and exciting part of the story. Of course, every perspective of the story told is needed. But obviously Abilene’s story is the best. It has so much excitement, and it’s so  mysterious and adventurous.Second is Miss. Sadie’s view of the story. Her stories are mostly about the past and how the letters from Ned connect to all these stories. She is a Fortune Teller, meaning she knows a lot about the past and the future. Also meaning, she tells the stories in a way that no one else could have told the stories. When Abilene brings a letter to her, she connects those letters to the past, helping Abilene find out what each one means and is talking about. When Miss. Sadie helps Abilene connect the letters with the stories in the past, Abilene gets more betrothed in finding out why Gideon has sent her to Manifest. When Abilene would come to her, she would always have a very sassy, salty mood. Why? Because not only does she know things because she’s a fortune teller, she knew things because Ned was her son, who died at war,, and she knew a lot about him. So she was always a little bitter when Abilene would ask about Ned’s letters. But the whole point is, Miss. Sadie’s perspective of the story is important because it shows us all about the past. And with these stories from the past, it makes it easier to understand the rest of the stories.The third is all the letters from Ned which were written much before Abilene was even born. All these letters were written to his friend, Jinx. Ned and Jinx are really close friends. They did a lot of things together, including the stuff they did to the KKK. Abilene thinks that the reason to why Gideon sent her to Manifest was because Gideon was Jinx, and Gideon felt responsible for Ned’s death. She also thinks that Gideon sent her because he thought he got her sick. She had the cut on her knee, which gave her an infection, causing him to think he got her sick. When Ned wrote in his letter to jinx, “With war going on, you can’t be too careful about spies.” meaning that Ned wasn’t being careful or keeping an eye out for the spies. Which is most likely the reason to why he died, he didn’t keep an eye out for anything. And Gideon(Jinx), felt somewhat responsible for Ned’s death. And the point here is, Ned is telling Jinx all about the war, and telling him to keep an eye out. This shows us what the war was like, and we need a perspective on the war in order to know how Ned died. And fourth is all of Hattie Mae’s articles that she wrote. These articles aren’t necessarily telling a whole story. Her articles give a sense of what’s going on. There are a lot of commercialized products, most of which don’t actually work. This shows that it wasn’t such a great time period. It was the depression, and no one really made money. So in order to make money, people would invent new, useless products to sell to people. Here’s an example from the book: “BILLY BUMP’S HAIR TONIC: Listen up, fellas. Do you have a dry itchy scalp? Wish you had more hair on your head? Is your hair turning the color of the old gray goat? Then Billy Bumps Hair Tonic is just for you. Just rub a little on your hair a scalp before bedtime, and when you wake up, you’ll notice a clean, tingly feeling. This means your hair is growing back…….” Um, no, that tingly feeling means that you now have Alopecia Areata. Another example from the book: “BURT’S BOTTOMS UP: Got bumps in your bottom? Those itchy, sore hemorrhoids that make sitting uncomfortable? Well, Burt’s Bottoms Up is the elixir for you. Just drink a vial of Burt’s Bottoms Up and you’ll be sitting pretty in no time…..”Well this one’s even worse! Not only are you getting Alopecia Areata, you’ll now have Gastroesophageal reflux disease because of all the Burt’s Bottoms Up you’ve been drinking!These people that sell useless products are known as, “Snake Oil Salesmen”. Snake oil was told to be a cure for everything back then. When these salesmen would sell their snake oil, they made good money. In the matter of fact, the snake oil didn’t actually do anything! It made matters worse for a person for whatever reason they would use it for. So these people on Hattie Mae’s articles were just selling things that were counterproductive. Not only does her articles include useless products, they include her actual writings(Which are actually useful). At the end of her articles, she writes, “So for all the whos, whats, whys, whens, and wheres……” This shows that people in the town are always asking, whos, whats, whys, whens, wheres, showing that they are always worried about something. This helps show readers that it’s not a really good time period. Same goes for the useless products being sold, they are being invented to make money, because of the Great depression. So, her articles really help us understand what’s going on in the town. All of these Perspectives of the stories are super critical. If we didn’t have each side of the story, we would be able to connect different things and figure things out. We have the part where Abilene is trying to find out the reason to why Gideon sent her to Manifest. Without all of Ned’s letters, and without Miss. Sadies stories of the past, she wouldn’t be able to connect anything together. Therefore, she wouldn’t have ever found out why he sent her away. The Hattie Mae articles, they helped her understand what it was like back then. It helped her understand what things people were going through and what kind of time period it was. All of the perspectives and layers of the book help each perspective find it’s own understanding. With Ned’s letters, Miss. Sadie’s stories of the past, Hattie Mae’s articles, and Abilene’s main story, it wouldn’t be a story at all. All the perspectives need each other to be understood. They all help understand the story, they all help us see what’s going on in each time period, they all give a different perspective which helps us understand what is was like for different kinds of people, and most of all help find out different cases, stories and Mysteries.


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