The Wind Done Gone was a novel written by Alice Randall which tells the story of Gone With the Wind from the point of view of Cynara, Scarlett O’hara’s half sister, Mammy’s daughter. She’s a slave too. The names of all major characters, other than Mammy, have been changed. Tara becomes Tata, Scarlett becomes Other, her father, Gerald O Hara becomes Planter, her mom becomes Lady and Ashley becomes The Dreamy Gentleman. Like Scarlett she also falls in love with ‘R’ and after he leaves her, Cynara becomes his mistress.
We all know what happened after the book was published. Margaret Mitchell’s estate sued the author and after much litigation a settlement was reached. The book was branded a ‘parody’ and all but disappeared from public memory.
There are other spin offs to Gone With the Wind. There’s Rhett Butler’s People, which traces Rhett’s journey and there’s Scarlett, the official sequel to the book. None of them could come close to Gone With the Wind.
While spin offs, sequels and series have almost become a norm, I haven’t come across many novels that have tried to tackle a story from a different perspective. Of course copyright issues might be a deterrent.
Some authors like Chitra Banerjee and Kavita Kane have explored other POVs in Indian epics and I’ve loved most of them.
I find different POVs fascinating. For instance, I’d love to read a book from the point of view of an upperclass wife in The Handmaid’s Tale. What did she feel as she watched her husband bed another woman? Did she, even for one small moment, feel a pang of sympathy for the Handmaid? Or did jealousy and insecurity chase away all other feelings?
I’d love to read Rebecca from Maxim’s point of view. The backstory leading up to her murder and then his encounter with the new Mrs de Winter would have been quite a roller-coaster.
So tell me, which popular book would you like to read from an alternate point of view?