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The Borrowers

The Borrowers

by Mary Norton

Awe and Amazement Theme

You've probably heard of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. You know, the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Temple of Artemis… the list goes on. But for Arrietty and the other borrowers, the leg of a chair is as big as the Colossus of Rhodes, and a little patch of grass is as awe-inspiring as the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. As our tiny protagonists are awestruck by everyday objects, we realize that normal is relative; in The Borrowers, there's more than one way of viewing the world.

Questions About Awe and Amazement

  1. How does Arrietty's perspective on the wide world differ from the boy's?
  2. Why do you think the author uses such lofty language to talk about boring old stuff like a front door?
  3. Which characters are most awestruck? Are there any commonalities here, such as age, gender, or type of creature? Or is everyone amazed across the board?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Arrietty is the most awestruck of all the characters because she's the most open-minded.

Kate is the most awestruck because she's so amazed, she won't let Mrs. May stop telling the story.

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