by Mary Norton
The Borrowers The Supernatural Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)
"I don't know," said Mrs. May, shaking her head, "I just don't know!" she smoothed out her work upon her knee. "He was such a tease. He told us so many things—my sister and me—impossible things." (1.31-32)
Have you ever heard the phrase "seeing is believing"? This statement fits this novel to a tee. Or, now that we think of it, in Kate's case, it just might be "hearing is believing."
"And yet"—she looked into the fire—"there was something about him—perhaps because we were brought up in India among mystery and magic and legends—something that made us think that he saw things that other people could not see; sometimes we'd know he was teasing, but at other times—well, we were not so sure…" (1.34)
In this book, India is a mysterious and magical place. So it's a fitting home for the boy, who's the source of this fantastical story of the borrowers. But the real question is: did the boy make up the story because he came from India? Or did the fact that he was from India just make him more able to see the all-too-real borrowers?
He stood a moment, as though embarrassed, and then he said: "can you fly?"
"No," said Arrietty, surprised; "can you?" (9.44-45)
The boy and Arrietty aren't sure what to make of each other because they have never seen such creatures before. So it's kind of funny that the boy's first assumption about Arrietty is that she just might be able to take to the skies. We imagine his thought process going something like this: Strange creature? Probably flies.