She is one of three children, but the only daughter of Dolly and Sam Pickles. She is seen as the most ‘mature’ of the bunch, being the one who bears most of the typical adult responsibility, even at a young age, by having to cook, look after the family and ultimately get a job to sustain the family, her father’s gambling addiction and the alcohol needs of her mother. Rose loves her father as he is the only person who acts even remotely like a parent should. Her conflicts lie greatly with her mother whose duties she has had to take up. She seeks to protect those around her, evident in her care of her father during his suicidal moment and her infatuation with Fish, the epitome of need and innocence. Rose has needs too, mainly to be loved and to be independent. This need is shown through both her relationship o Toby Raven and to Quick, as well as her desire to get a new place, all their own, as well as her getting a job. She likes order: a mother cooking, father with a job and children at school like on pg 86: “Rose kept the colours inside the lines and all the patterns were proper, sensible and neat. Happiness. That’s what it was.” This reveals why Rose takes up the duties of her mother, to keep the family ordered and proper, to let ‘happiness’ prevail. Rose desires to surpass her mother, to go beyond her drunkenness and her inability to be a mother. Two times in the novel, Rose suffers with anorexia. The first time, the anorexia was to upset her mother and spite Dolly: denied a mother, she denied herself good health. She looks like her mother, not as beautiful though, and purposely making her self look sick would have been a jab at her mother. “Hating [Dolly] is the best part of being alive” (175). She is cured when she gets the job at Bairds; able to stand on her own two feet, proud and independent. The second bought of anorexia is brought on by the loss of her first child with Quick. Her inability to nurture herself and to protect something she loved is cause to deprive herself of food and good health. This time, her reunion with Dolly is what saves her. Rose, after the terrible incident with Toby Raven, is married to Quick after their encounter at the river. She loves his endearing patience and calmness, something she is lacking in.
· Female à 1935
· Middle child à Pickles family
· Slender brown girl à dark straight hair cut straight across her forehead à pretty (p8)
· Good relationship with Sam à openly loves and protects her from Dolly.
· Doesn’t get along with Dolly
· First falls in love with fish à he has no boundaries or expectations on her.
· Rose’s relationship with Toby highlights her emerging womanhood and desire to rise above Dolly
· Very rational about sex à goes ‘melancholy and fanciful’ (p291)
· Deprives herself of food to spite and punish Dolly à reflects pain and loss she feels (loss of family)
· Death of baby allows her to relate to D.
· Her desire for a new house with quick indicates rejection of her life and identity… eventually realises she doesn’t want to leave. (p418)
· ‘She feels tough all of a sudden and grown up’ (p14)
· ‘felt tough sometimes’ (p121)
· ‘she was hot in the face like she was holding something back.’ (p16)
· “I can’t bear to think of any of us leaving. We belong to it… and I want to stay.” (p418)
· ‘the woman and the daughter do not speak’ (p16)
· ‘Rose loves that weird boy, she knows it.’ (p158)
· Sam: “Jesus, Rose, you look like a corpse these days.” (p159)
· ‘Dolly tried not to think about how she hated Rose these days… when you know all of a sudden that someone of your own flesh and blood cant find a spark of worth to your name – then you harden up.’ (p154)
· ‘some of [her] will be forever watching [Fish] on the landing’ (p290)
Quick: Quick feels intensely guilty for not being able to save Fish. He feels that the tragedy was his fault and that “he knows it should have been him, not Fish” (pg 60). Because of this, he thinks that he should