Clara Purdy Redemption

1042 Words5 Pages
Clara Purdy, the main protagonist of the novel Good to a Fault by Marina Endicott, lives a monotonic and isolated life. The novel illustrates how Clara is able to achieve redemption by overcoming her fear of letting others into her life. While their encounter was an accident, the family whose car Clara crashes into turns out to be what saves Clara from her melancholic life. The three children in the family provokes a kind of love in Clara that she has never experienced before which expedites her journey of growth as a middle-aged woman. The car accident also encourages Clara to start going to church again. There she finds religious guidance as well as Paul, the Pastor of the church, who also plays an imperative part in Clara’s advancement…show more content…
Being divorced at a young age, Clara is reminiscent about her former marriage and is unable to overcome her past. She has had the same job at the same insurance company for almost two decades and remains living alone in the same house as she did when she was a child, even after her parents’ passing. Because she cannot let go of her prior life, she does not have the means or the incentives to “[make] something of herself” (Endicott 5). Clara’s need for redemption stems from her “state of mild despair” (4) as she is a middle-aged woman who has “nothing to show for [her life]” (4). Even without any burdens or financial stress, Clara feels that she is being “buried alive” (4) and constantly thinks about how “useless [she feels] in the world.” To Clara, there seemed to be some sort of “barrier between” (6) her and the world that she could not be…show more content…
They are then taken to the hospital and Lorraine, the mother of the family is revealed to have cancer. Clara, feeling responsible for the accident and able to “see what they need” (19), takes the entire family into her home while Lorraine is being treated in the hospital. Now the house she once lived alone in is occupied by not only herself but as well as the father, Clayton, Lorraine’s mother-in-law Mrs. Pell and three children of the family, Darlene (Dolly), Trevor and Pearce. With the newfound burden of this family, Clara goes to church to seek some guidance. She tells Paul Tippett, the pastor of the Anglican Church she used to go to, about her situation and how she feels “stupidly ashamed” (19) for assisting the Gage family. Regardless of what she thinks of her involvement in this predicament, Clara sacrifices everything in her current life for the sake of raising the children. This includes quitting her job, giving up the freedom of being alone in her house along with the money that she had saved up over the years. Soon after she takes in the children, she grows very fond of them and starts to think of them as her own. However when Clayton abandons the family, stealing from Clara in the process, Clara feels overwhelmed by the sudden increase in responsibilities. Looking after the children was exhausting enough but “the cooking never seemed to end” (38) and
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