In a dry season - key conversations


1. Dialogue between Brain and Banks -extract from

This is from the beginning of the novel where Brain rings his father to tell him about his disappointing exam results.

Banks: 'Go on,' he prompted > short imperative and reporting clause.

Brain: 'About the exams, like...' > Filler and pause

Adjacency pair - command + Obedience

Banks: 'How bad is it? What did you get? > two closed questions quick succession

Brain: 'Well, that's it... i mean... you won't like it.' > pauses and declarative sentence

Adjacency pair - question + statement

This is mostly free direct speech

Brain feels nervous and maybe a bit disapointed with himslef, this is indicated by the pauses which replicates his hestitation as he does not want his dad to get mad at him. Banks feels tense as he feels he's been kept out the dark. This shows that they dont have a very close relationship as Brain keeps stuff from his dad. Tension is created by questioning and short responses.  

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2. Dialogue between Brain and Banks - extract from

This is where Banks goes to see his son's band play and where they reconcile their differences and discuss the divorce between Banks and Brain's mum.

Banks swallowed and reached for another cigarette. 'it's not that easy,' he said. 'Do you think i didn't want to?' > use of the verb 'swallowed' shows his nervousness, declarative sentence and closed question.

Brain: 'Didn't' > use of italics emphasises Brain's tone on this question.

Banks: 'A lot's changed.'

Brain: 'You mean you've got a new girlfriend?' > closed question - interrogation in tone

Banks: If it were possible to inflect the word with more venom than Brain did, Banks couldn't imagine how. > noun 'venom' used to describe tone shows strength of feeling.

Absence of reporting clauses emphasises tension - Free direct speech used here.

This conversation shows that feelings are very strong and that their relationship is still very rocky as Brain is still holding grudges. Tension is created by the interrogation tone of Brain.

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3. Dialogue between Banks and Annie - extract from

This is where Banks went out with a friend of his the night before; this is the conversatioon which takes place between Annie and Banks the next day- where she is obviously very upset with him for choosing to spend time with his friend the night before instead of her,

' You're back, then,' was all she said. > declarative sentence used as a question, the adverb 'all' shows her reluctance to speak to Banks.

Banks: 'Yes.' > minimal response  -    Adjacency pair statement followed by statement of agreement.

Annie: 'Have a good time?' > closed question.

Banks: 'Pretty good thanks.' > adverb doesn't want to exaggerate the time he had - doesn't want it to sound too good.

Annie: ' Good. i'm glad.' > minimal response

Banks sensed that her tone was softening a little. Should he tell her he had missed her last night? Or ask her what was wrong? Better hold off awhile. He ventured a tentative, 'Is there anything else?' > 2 rhetorical questions- he's uncreatin. declarative he decides what to do.

Free direct speech here - minimal reporting cluases. Tension is created by the minimal responses by Annie. The relationship shows feelings of uncertainty by Banks and jealousy by Annie.

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4. Dialogue between Banks and Annie extract- page

This is where Annie and banks are in a resturant; Banks begins to question Annie about why she is woeking in the quiet village she is. Banks also wonders if 'Jimmy Riddle' his superior put Annie in Banks path on purpose because he wanted Annie ro entrap Banks or cause him trouble somehow.

Banks: 'Do you blame me for wondering what's going on?' > verb 'blame' negative slightly resentful of Annie? - closed question.

Annie: Her expression softened a little. She tilted her head. Perhaps this is it? She suggested. 'What he expected.' > paralinguistic features - non- speech features which contribute to the meaning of speech. - declarative senstence.

Adjacency pair question + answer.

Banks: 'In what way' > open question

Annie: 'That we'd get together somehow, break the rules and get caught. That way he could be rid of both of us. > 'break..' this phrase shows the 'danger' element to their relationship. The verb 'rid' negative connotations.

The feelings of the relationship at the moment are uncretain they are not sure what they want especially Banks, this is because they feel it is a trap by Jimmy. This shows that there relationship isn't soley ground yet.

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5. Dialogue between Banks and Vivian Elmsley- extr

This is when Annie and Banks first go and question Vivian about Gloria's death in the present day.

Vivian: 'Believe what you will.' > imperative sentence- arrogant tone

Banks: 'Were the two of you close?' > closed question

Vivian: 'I wouldn't say we were close, no.' > repetition of 'close' she uses his phrases she wants to limit her response.

Banks: 'Did you like her?'

Vivian: 'I can't honestly say i knew her very well' > adjective 'honestly' trying to convice him. Closed question.

Adjacency pairs questions + answers

Free direct speech; tension created. Questions going back and forth Vivian's answers deliberatly avoidant.

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6. Dialgoue between vivian Elmsley and Banks

Extract from page 427

This is when Annie and Banks go back to question Vivian Elmsley for the second time- she has written confession in an enevlope ready to hand to him.

Banks: ' Going somewhere, Ms Elmsley?' asked Banks. > Ellipsis - he has missed out 'Are you?' threatening tone.

Vivian: 'You?' She put her hand to her heart. 'I didn't think .. so soon... i was just... you'd better come in.' > 'you' minimal response - short question represents shock also 'heart' emphasis of the shock, ellipsis words missed out, pauses shows hesitation -Imperative tries to regain control.

Banks: 'What were you sending me?' Banks asked. 'A confession?'  > repetition of questions - he's in control.

Vivian: ' Of sorts.Yes. I suppose you could call it that.' - adjacency pair question+answer

Banks: So you were lying yesterday? 'were' paralinguistic feature emphasis on tone.closed question.

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7. Dialogue between Gwen and Gloria- when they fir

Extract from page 43

Gwen: 'Are you the new land girl at Top Hill Farm?' I asked, curious now, and beginning to feel more than a little guilty about my deceit. > 'curious' and 'guilty' adjectives-emotions- contrast. Deceit - Gwen has just lied+said no cigarettes.

Gloria: She smiled again. 'Word gets around quickly, doesn't it?' > paralinguistic feature, tag question to get Gwen to speak more.

Gwen: 'It's a small village' > short declarative sentence, she sounds unfreindly 

Gloria: 'So I see. Anyway, that's me. Gloria Stringer.' 2 declarative sentences together shows her confidence. 

Adjacency pairs question + answers.

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8. Dialogue between Gwen and Gloria

Extract from page 399

This is where Gloria confesses her past to Gwen and how she had a child with another man before moving to Hobbs End and marrying Gwen's brother.

Gloria: 'Haven't I lost Matt Now?' > closed question, almost rhetorical shows her desperation.

Gwen: 'It's not the same.' > declarative sentence

Gloria: 'You're right; it's not. Anyway, i'd walked away even before i lost them'. > negative connotations of these words emphasises her feelings of loss.

Gwen: 'What do you mean?' 

Gloria: 'She paused and touched my arm slightly. There are things you don't know about me, Gwen. I havent been a good person. i've done terrible things. I've been selfish. I've hurt people terribly 

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