Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers

Help / FAQ


printable study guide online download notes summary


<- Previous | First | Next ->
Barron's Booknotes-A Separate Peace by John Knowles

Table of Contents

POINT OF VIEW

We think of point of view as the angle from which the story is told, the perspective from which we receive information. Sometimes an author will use the third person "he" or "she" throughout a book; this tends to remove us from the work rather than draw us in, to put and keep us outside it. In A Separate Peace, where one of the central characters is the narrator, we see everything through his eyes.

Gene Forrester happens to be a quiet, shy, self-effacing person whose point of view does not overwhelm anyone. He's the kind of person you wouldn't notice immediately if you walked into a crowded room; he'd be off to the side, arms crossed, with a clear, steady gaze and an attentive air. He'd speak little unless spoken to, and he'd weigh his words carefully. He'd be forthcoming with observations about people, and you'd probably be surprised at first by his accuracy, until you understood that Gene spent most of his time watching and listening, a participant in his mind more than through any physical action.



This sensibility brings the story to us, allowing us to absorb it without feeling threatened or intimidated. The power of A Separate Peace resides in the subtle way it conveys very emotional material. This is a book about the rise and fall of a heroic figure who happens to be all of seventeen years old-as seen through the eyes of his dearest friend, who, in a bizarre and finally inexplicable way, is responsible for the final, painful tragedy. It is a book about youth fading to premature age through exposure to death. It is a story told with measured, consistently dampened tones, no shock value, no cheap thrills-and this makes it all the more rewarding, especially in a time when we are in danger of becoming insensitive under a daily barrage of exaggerated sensations. A Separate Peace is a brief novel that gives the gift of time to breathe as we read it. This is what the leisurely, fair-minded point of view of Gene Forrester provides unwaveringly-except at those severe points of stress when his friend Finny falters, falls, suffers, rises up, admits his love, discovers their shared secret, and falls again for the final time.

Table of Contents


<- Previous | First | Next ->
Barron's Booknotes-A Separate Peace by John Knowles
Google
Web
PinkMonkey

Google
  Web PinkMonkey.com   
Google
  Web Search Our Message Boards   

All Contents Copyright © 1997-2004 PinkMonkey.com
All rights reserved. Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.


About Us
 | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page
This page was last updated: 5/9/2017 9:52:01 AM