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The Westing Game

The Westing Game


by Ellen Raskin

The Westing Game Wealth Quotes

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #1

"His estate is estimated to be worth over two hundred million dollars."

Turtle read that again: two hundred million dollars. Wow! (4.18-19)

Just in case we readers weren't impressed enough with that figure, Raskin has Turtle repeat it to us, and add the emphasis of "Wow!" Two hundred million dollars is still a ton of money in the twenty-first century; can you imagine how much it would have been worth in 1978?

When you consider how much money that is, the idea of having a will that's based on a game with all these moving parts, rather than an airtight legal document that clearly states who gets what is almost foolish. It's too much money for fooling around with.

Quote #2

Recalling family gossip about a rich uncle (maybe it was a great-uncle, anyway, his name was Sam) Grace had convinced herself that she was the rightful heir. (5.1)

Knowing Grace, she'd probably figure out a way to convince herself of this without remembering family gossip. As we find out later, though, Grace isn't wrong – she really is related to Sam Westing. Technically, perhaps, she should end up as the correct heir, since she's the closest living blood relative (that we know of). Her idea here is a funny mixture of conceit and secret righteousness.

Quote #3

Money! Each pair in attendance will now receive a check for the sum of $10,000. The check cannot be cashed without the signatures of both partners. Spend it wisely or go for broke. May God thy gold refine. (7.34)

This is a key part of the will, and also a weird one. What does $10,000 have to do with becoming the winner of the game? It's kind of like getting all the accessories for Monopoly and then switching to Clue. With the exception of Turtle and Flora, none of the teams use their money to help themselves within the game – all that money goes to other life stuff. You know what's kind of weird, too? We never really hear about what Angela and Sydelle do with their money. What do you think it could be?

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