The Summary of “Act of Will”
By: Barbara Taylor Bradford
(sumber foto: facebook)
Oleh: Yeni Kholifa
(Guru di MTs Darul Hikmah Ngancar Kabupaten Kediri)
Aundra Kenton is an orphan, her parents was die. Her father is Adrian Kenton and her mother is a beautiful Edit Kenton. Her mother was die because her heart failure. She have Frederick and William as her brother. And she has an uncle, he is Peter Lacy. He is busy man but very kind and generous and most uncommonly thoughtful. After their father was die because of consumption, uncle peter becomes an even more frequent visitor, staying with them at High Cleugh. For his job Uncle Peter must returns to London at regular intervals, but he is never absent for very long and he never come empty-handed. There are usually present for them all. And he gives permission for them to live on High Cleugh, and without paying rent.
Between her brother, actually Audra is the most cleverer child in their family. By the end she gets study in Australia. She is looking to be better herself. Her thinks is focus on the day she want take a step forward and climbing the ladder. Gradually she begins to realize that nursing appeals to her.
Through out the test and interview, finally Audra becomes one of the best student nurses on the hospital staff. In a fact, Audra gets diploma and nursing achievement because she is helped by Frederik and William. But in the end her brothers have not be able to save up the money for her passage to Australia. So, Audra looks for money of herself because she hopes that she will join with them in Sydney.
When she is a nurse of hospital in Ripon, in Yorkshire. Audra only has one friend, she is Gwen Thornton, another nurse at the hospital. One day Audra gets her birthday and she celebrates her birthday with Gwenny. Gwen invites Audra to go Harrogate to buy a present for Audra’s birthday. In one shop she sees the dress in the window of Madame Stella’s gown. She falls in love with it instantly. Actually the dress is very expensive. When they know that the two of them stun, never the less because they learn that it cost three guineas. Audra makes to leave at once. But the redoubtable Gwen restrain her, have somehow manages to maneuver her into the fitting room before she can make a graceful escape. No wanting to create an embarrassing scene in front of the saleslady. Audra has option but to try on the dress.
So, in the end, after some indecision on her part because of its price, and worry whisperings with Gwen, finally she buys the dress.
Then they leave Madame Stella’s to back to Ripon. On the way to the bus stop, they pass the Arcadian Rooms, where tea dances are held every afternoon in the Palm Court. Audra celebrates her birthday in this place with wears her new dress. They are exciting and anticipating as they ride on the bus back To Ripon.
A halfway they must separate because Of Gwen has a sick mother to nurse. So, she must go in Horsforth to meet with her mother. Without Gwen she feels alone, Gwen is the only person who Audra’s has in the world at this time.
Next week later, Gwen sends a letter for Audra. She says she is not able to travel from Horsforth for a visit with her best friend. So, in her letter she asks Audra to meet her halfway. Audra agrees to this request immediately and sends off a note by return post. After that they can meet each other.
Gwen gives a present for Audra when they do meeting. Actually it is a present birthday for Audra, that is a Paintbox. She gives it because paints is her favorite hobby since her childhood. In the last of their meeting Gwen says that she will not be coming back to work at the fever hospital. Then Gwen gives advice to Audra actually she can apply her nursing for a hospital job in Leeds in order to they can easy to meet each other.
Because of Matron Lenox, Audra can go to Leeds to get a job. In Leeds she can meet with Mrs. Irene Bell of Chalper House, Upper Armly. Finally she can get job from her as the new nanny in her house. Mrs. Bell is kindly, so if Audra gets free time she can spend her time to invite Gwen to stay overnight at the Chalper House.
One day Mrs. Bell’s child, he is Theophilus. He asks Audra to go with him in the pets shop. He want to buy Danny a budgie as a present’s birthday for himself. In this place Theo meets with Mr. Vincent Crowther. Theo turns his small bright face up to Vincent’s and then they do conversation. Theo tells about his nanny that she is different, special, clever, lady, and she is obviously a relation of the Bells. Heard it, Mrs. Crowther hardly be interested in her. Actually Audra feels the same with Mr. Crowther, she falling in love with Mr. Vincent when meets with him in the pet shop at the same time.
The beginning of the day, she thinks that she want to life with Vincent Crowther. He is her destiny. Five months later Audra and Vincent married. In her wedding she uses a simple yet elegant afternoon dress of crepe de chine, which she designs herself. Now she is Mrs. Vincent Crowther. She thinks it possible she can ever be so happy with her young husband.
But there is a problem, her best friend dislike her husband. That is the sad truth, and it trouble Audra a great deal. Unfortunately, Gwen dislike Vincent before she meets him. It is all because of Charlie. Gwen condemns Vincent without bothering to get to know him, simply because he have been chosen instead of her brother.
Audra does not want to lose her best friend. But she also loves her husband. However, Gwen is the girls who dislike Vincent. But he always friendly and cordial to her. Audra advices her husband, he should receive better treatment from her old friend.
Although there are problem, like Gwen who dislike of Vincent and Vincent’s family that have difference opinion about their marriage that had happened. In Vincent ‘s family and Audra Comes from different world. Audra is a lady bear and breed. But Vincent, he is difference, not same with Audra. Depend on opinion of them that difference makes a big difference. In a fact that is all not influence Vincent and Audra, they still loved each other. And they continue to do their honeymoon at Robin Hood’s Bay.
Because they spend their honeymoon at Robin Hood’s Bay in Harrogate, and they know that will be passing close by on their return to Leeds, they think it will be a good idea to come and see Alicia drummond. She is the mother’s first cousin of Audra. Audra meets her because she want to ask back her mother’s wooden jewelry box. Audra thinks that it was stolen and it still in this place. In Alicia’s house they find her mother’s furniture, silver, and her father’s paintings. Because of Alicia is a foul woman, so Audra thinks now is the time to her should wear the three tiny diamond that ever used by her mother. When she was a child, she remembers her mother looks elegance with it. Before she gets it. She fight with aunt Alicia and she says Audra is a Bastard and her father is not Adrian Kenton but Peter Lacey’s Bastard and it make Audra cry and worry. Finally they pick up the handbag and the jewelry box.
Then they want to visit with Audra’s great aunt, she is French Reynolds. She want to know about the truth of herself, from her Audra gets the paper that was saved and kept in order to Alicia Drummond do not know about it. In the paper she reads that her mother initials is “EWK”, and before they leaves Frances Reynolds’ house, they get a piece of silver for their first homes.
Later they come back in their cottage. Audra do meeting with Gwen at Betty’s Café in Leeds. Gwen says that she want to get married with someone that she loves. he is Geoffrey Freemantle. He is cold,. arrogant, sarcastic, good-looking, and a snob. His work as a doctor at Leed Infirmary. He comes from Harrogate and that is where his parent live. Knowing that Audra is exciting and feels wonderful because her best friend thinks to get married.
After she meets with with Gwen, in their cottage in Pot Lane Audra disputes with Vincent, it is because of her husband always out at the pub with his brothers and his friends. Beside it Audra want to go out to work and she want to come back in her last job as a nurse in Ripon. Because this problem, she want to leave Vincent. Then she goes to terminal with her suitcase, at the tram stop she meets Laurette, her sister in-law Laurette makes Audra comes home with her. She stays in mother in-law’s home for a few days. Then her husband comes, so he meets his wife. Because Audra is known being pregnant and they will have a baby. That is makes Vincent will not leave his wife and they will live together. One day their first child is born. It is a boy and they give name Alfie for the first son.
In other hand, Gwen do occasion of her marriage with Geoffrey Freemantle. Because of this, Audra loses her best friend. Gwen just has a little time for her, for anyone else, the circumstances of them will be very different lives. Another problem too. Gwen’s former boyfriend, he is mike Lesley is Vincent’s friend so, Vincent do not want to make friend with Geoffrey Freemantle. And Laurette is deeply in love with Mike Lesly, and he with her, they want to be married.
One day later Audra and Laurette go to Betty’s Café in Leeds, when they comes back in cottage Audra sees her baby is not well. Then she want to examine Alfie in order to she knows what had happened with him. After she examines her baby, she knows that her baby gets Meningitis symptoms. It is the most ghastly illness. She had seen two children die of it when she had been a nurse at the Fever Hospital. Although Audra and Vincent brought their baby in the hospital but the health of their little son cannot be better till they know that their baby is die. Audra and Vincent look awful and depression. More again Vincent be a joblessness because Mr. Varley’s company which is give him a job had gone down the drain.
For a while they get a lucky omen because Audra bears her second baby. They give name Christina. Their family become going to fine again because Christina is born in the world.
Audra goes to back to work for Mrs. Jarvis, whom she had nursed for four month before Christina’s birth. They desperately need much money for Christina, for her clothes, her education, and her future. Her job only a few minutes away from the cottage on Pot Lane. Audra is going to become a dressmaker in her free time to help her husband get more money, Because Audra spends a lot of time for her working, her husband has an affair with Millicennt Arnold. When Audra knows she apologize it because it happens not belong.
In four years old Christina has ability to paint. In her mother’s party she gives the picture on the front is of a bowl of yellow roses standing an a table near an open window, and fluttering above the bowl is a red butterfly. Knowing this Audra has a plan that Christina she will have to go to art school when she is sixteen years old. Later she will has to go to London. To study at the Snade no, better still, At The Royal College Of Art.
Audra want her daughter will be brilliant painter, a great artist. Christina gets painting talent because Audra and her father have it. So, it answer the question in the past that Adrian Kenton is her father, not Peter Lacey because her daughter has the same talent with her father and her.
One day Vincent Crowther joins the royal navy and he help his country from the enemy in a war. At the end of the war saves but he heards a bad news actually his sister Laurette was die because of cancer. The war had changed Vincent, he no longer works outdoors on the building sites. He had gone into partnership with Fred Varley and his son, Harry after the end of the war. Vincent and Varley is a small company, but they are kept busy with local building project. Vincent is earning a decent living, and he is able to support his family himself.
This time for Christina to get study at the Royal College Of Art in London. Christina is a student that hard worker by nature and ambitious. Being in open, out going, and friendly young woman, Christina is also popular with her contemporaries. She gets a best friend in hear college, she is Jane Sedgewick. Jane Sedgewick is a daughter of Dulcie Manville and Ralph Sedgewick, husband and wife acting team equally very famous in their own way. Actually they are the popular artist that is liked by Christina’s mother.
Christina want to become a fashion designer, to be rich and famous designer. After graduating from the painting school of the Royal Collage of Art. Christina gives up her art to become a fashion designer. This matter that makes her parents is angry. Now Christina is committing her own act of will, and her mother Audra will not be able to stop her, just as her father Vincent is never able to stop his wife.
She knows Audra loves Christina for too much to remain angry with her very long. She also hope that her father is already exerting some influence. In the meantime, she is going to do her damnedest to make them proud of her. Christina Crowthter becomes a superstar in the Internation Fashion Firmanent and she is young business woman that famous with her design of fashion. Finally Christina’s parents is not angry again because they realize now that there are wrong to cut she off in the way that they do. A fashion designer is her choice, so it is her life, not a painting. The first she falling in love with a fashion designer.
One day Christina falling in love with Milles Sutherland, a man who she meets at Jane’s party. She does not care, however, Miles that had married with Candida Sutherland. He is not the most handsome man that she had ever met before, but he have an attractive face, lane, intelligent, composed of uneven planes and angels. So, they have a wild affair. And they are too quick to making love.
Miles goes to see Candida to ask for a divorce but the answer is no. He want to marry Christina and he want her as his wife. He does not care with Candida and with their affair scandal. It does not matter as long as Christina always be together with him.
Christina is pregnant and she does not want to have an abortion. Miles does not want Christina to do it either. Although that is the problem because they do not get marry yet but finally they lose their baby.
Miles still want to marry Christina, he try again to meet Candida to ask a divorce. But Candida always refuse him to it. Christina thinks that she cannot continue her love with Miles, because hehas a political career and he has his children. this is a good solution for Christina to leave him.
After she leaves Miles she meets with her close friend Jane. One day Jane introduces her friend Alex Newman to Christina. He is charming, good looking, rich intelligent, he is also single. Finally Christina and Alex get married. And they are the best team in business together. Alex had taken the House of Christina and makes it into an international business worth brillions. Christina has the artistic talent, Alex has the business acumen and by licensing he name she becomes bigger than ever.
Alex and Christina have a cute daughter, she is Kyle. In the end, they are a happy family. In Christina’s mother, Birthday she gives a High Cleugh for her parent. High Cleugh is the childhood home of Audra. Audra never think she will ever hold the key of High Cleugh in her hand again. Audra very happy , exciting and so surprise because her daughter can give her back that house. In the end all of them are the happy family.
The Moral Value That Can I Take From The Novel of “Act of Will”
From Audra Kenton in this novel, I get some moral values that useful for myself because she has a good character and personality. For instance, Audra is an autonomous woman when she is a child, she is an orphan. So, she usual to life stand alone of her life and of her family. When she is a young woman, she works as a nurse at Fever Hospital to look for money for herself. Also she ever work as a dressmaker to help her husband Vincent Crowther when her husband loses his job. From this condition I get something that can make me realize, actually I am a lucky girl because my family is complete. I realize how difficult my parents look for money to me. So, I must more appreciate them because they give me something that I want. I hope I could try to be an autonomous woman like Audra that is not make trouble the other people, including my parents. I hope I could think again if want to do something, like shopping. I must save my money and use it for something that really important. I want to try will not make trouble to my parents, for example, I wanna expense my life with ability that I have. I wanna try to give course for the students of Elementary School, Junior High School, or maybe if I am able, I wanna try to give course the srudents of Senior High School. So that, I will decrease my parents’ responsibility.
Then, the moral value that I get from Audra is her patience. When Audra loses her first baby, Alphie, she can accept this condition and it just for a while to be sad and depression. She can continue her life again with smile and happiness. And when she knows her husband loses his job after she loses her first baby, she can accept this condition patiently. Actually, when she gets marry with Vincent Crowther, her husband ever has an affair with other woman Millicent Arnold. And knowing this problem, she also can apologize her husband. How patience Audra Kenton to facing in the problem in her life make me interested to be a patient woman like her. I want to try be patient if I have problem in my life. Because with a patience, I can to think more adult before take an action, so I will not carelessly. With a patience I can more enjoyable in my life because I know about the character in myself, so I can control my mind to be better, do not easy to be angry and to bad think about a lot of think. With the patience I will positive thinking to facing in a lot of problem that often happen in my life.
Beside that, Audra is a superior intelligent woman. Actually, she is much cleverer than her brother Frederick and William. When she gets study in Australia she can learn quickly with her ability. Audra swiftly becomes one of the best student nurses on the hospital staff, and earns a reputation for being dedication. And she has a good intelligence in her sosialization when she is being with her patient in the hospital.
Also I want to be an intelligent woman, like Audra. I will try to study hard in order to I will get success in my education and in my life. I will study hard, descipline, and do not waste my time to do something that are not unuseful.
Relax is still needed but I will arrange my schedule, there is time for study, take a rest, or maybe playing with my friends and my family. The intelligence in socialization is important because with that I will get a lot of friends and connections. Connection is needed to life in the future because if we will graduate to look for a job we need it. I hope I can get success in the future about a lot of something, about an education, a job, a life, and maybe about a husband.
So, I will try to be an intelligent woman. I think the more intelligent person will appreciated by someone else. The intelligence is expensive, expensive to get it and expensive to do it. Study hard, descipline, and do a lot of thing depend on the rules is the one way to get intelligence. Although the basic of someone is less intelligence but if they want to try and work hard, they will be able to be intelligent person.
The Style of The Novel “Act of Wil”
The style of the novel “Act of Will” is optimistic story. Because the main character of this novel, she is Audra Kenton is the mostly has optimistic character from the beginning story till the ending. I can know about her optimist in pages 42-43 :
“The hospital routine had scarcely varied during Audra’s first year. The work was hard, even for the strongest of the girls. Some of them had left because their daily chores had worn them down and inevitably demolished their interest in nursing. Only the truly dedicated remained. Audra, with nowhere else to go, stayed out of sheer necessity.
However, there was also something very special in Audra Kenton, call it grit, that made her stick it out until she could graduate to nurse’s training. Small though she was, she had unusual physical stamina, as well as mental energy and toughness of mind that were remarkable in one so young. Despite her youth, she possessed inner resources which she was able to draw on for courage and strength. And so she had continued to scrub and clean and polish endlessly. . . run up and down endless stairs and along endless wards. . . forever on her feet or on her knees.
The toil and monotonous grind of her days quite apart, Audra could not complain that she was ill treated in any way, for she was not. Everyone at the hospital was kind to her and the other little ward maids, and if the food was plain, at least there was plenty of it. No one ever went hungry. Audra, plodding along and braced by her stoicism, would tell herself that hard work and stodgy food never killed anybody.
But by the end of the year she was looking to better herself. Her thoughts were focused on the day she would take a step forward and start climbing the ladder. She had been sent to work at the hospital against her will, but slowly, as she had mastered her chores, she had had a chance to look up, to observe and absorb. Gradually she had begun to realize that nursing appealed to her”
Besides it, the style of the novel “Act of Will” is a lonely story because the main character Audra Kenton in this story, often alone in her life. She is an orphan, and when she gets study in Australia she is separated from her brother Frederick and William. Also when she works as a nurse at Fever Hospital in Ripon in Yorkshire, she only has one friend Gwen Thorton. I can know about her lonely feeling in pages 17 :
“Today it was her birthday. It was June in the year
1926 and she was nineteen years old. Audra Kenton stood at the window of her room in the Fever Hospital in Ripon, in Yorkshire, where she worked as a nurse, gazing out at the back garden. Absently, she watched the play of light and shadow on the lawn, as the sunlight filtered through the leafy domes of the two great oaks that grew near the old stone wall. There was a gentle breeze, and the leaves rustled and trembled under it, and shimmered with green brilliance as they caught the sun. It was radiant and balmy, a day that invited and beckoned.
Matron had given Audra the afternoon off for her birthday. The problem was that she had nowhere to go and no one to spend it with. She was entirely alone in this world.
Audra only had one friend Gwen Thornton, another nurse at the hospital, but Gwen had been summoned home to Horsforth. Her mother had been taken ill and she was needed. Weeks ago, Gwen had arranged to exchange her day off with one of the other nurses, so that she could be with Audra, celebrate this important occasion with her, and the two of them had planned a very special day. Now their elaborate plans were laid to waste.
Leaning her head against the window frame, Audra sighed, thinking of the empty hours looming ahead. Unexpectedly her throat tightened and she felt the tears gathering behind her eyes as sadness mingled with bitter disappointment trickled through her...”
Also the syle of the novel “Act of Will” is intelligent story because Audra Kenton is intelligent woman. Her intelligence that make me to read this novel. I can know about her intelligence in pages 44 :
“with her superior intelligence, her ability to learn quickly, Audra swiflty became one of the best student nurses on the hospital staff, and earned a reputation for being dedicated. She found the new work and her studies challenging; also, she discovered she had a desire to heal and, therefore, a real aptitude for nursing. And the young patients, with whom she had a genuine affinity, became the focus of the love she bottles up inside her since her brothers had gone away...”
According in my opinion the novel of “Act of Will” has three styles, these are optimistic story, lonely story , and intelligent story because the main character Audra Kenton almost is mentioned has three character.
The Language Pattern of The Novel
“Act of Will”
Actually, after I read the novel “Act of Will” I can conclude that the language pattern in this novel uses Informal, Why? Because almost sentence that is said by the characters in this story is direct. And I think that the language pattern that uses in this novel is ancient English language because there are some words that different from the English words that I hear now, for example : the word “auntie”, now that I often hear becomes “aunt”. And in this novel there is a word that I think different , for example : the word “lovey”, now I hear it with the word “love or maybe lovely”. Also in this novel mentions about the word “mom or mum” I understand these words have meaning that same with the word “mother or mummy” but I do not know where is the more correct and I confuse to differ between American and British. Because this novel is literary work, so it is fine to mention the uncommon word, like “auntie”, “lovey”, “mom or mum”.
And I find an awkward sentence about the pattern in pages 46, “I never did get to take you to one of the fancy tea dances at The Palm Court of The Arcardian Rooms. ”, I think it is an ancient language pattern because after never there is words did and get. That is my point why I said there is an awkward sentence.
Something New That I Find in The Novel
“Act of Will”
I find something new in the novel “Act of Will” there are some terms for scientific language in hospital that I do not know yet, for example that is mentioned : 1. meningitis; acute inflammation of the membranes of the brain and spinal cord, or both; also called “spotted fever”, due to extensive spotting of the skin in severe case. 2. Symptoms; severe headache, high fever, frequently neck and back rigidity; also twitching or convulsions.3. Severe vomitting is common, known as projectile vomitting due to sudden ejection of vomit to some distance; spotting of skin in severe cases; delirium, coma (pages 198-199).
Also I find something error in a paragraph pages 205, because I do not understand with words : Aye, Lad, and Ta’rar, in paragraph :
“Aye, lad, so am I. And I’m doubly sorry for you and the rest of the men. I know how rough it’s going to be on all of you.”
“I’ll see you tomorrow then, Mr. Varley, Ta’rar.”
And about the word “heartbreak” in pages 31, I think it is an error word because I often hear it with “broken heart”. In paragraph :
“Frederick, Audra’s elder brother, had told her that their mother’s death was due to heart failure, but she had recently subtituted heartbreak for the latter...”