How Does Cormier Use Flashback In Heroes

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The book Heroes by Robert Cormier was set during the time of the war. Upon opening the novel, we are introduced to Francis Cassavant, a suicidal, battle ravaged young man who has just returned from the war front. Francis is riddled with guilt from events that had happened in the past and he is looking to commit an act of vengeance. In the book, each of the characters is developed through flashbacks of times during and before the war. Moreover, the war provides Francis with a means to an honorable death, as well as identifying characters as heroes in battle. If the book were not set during war times, this would not be possible.The fact that the book was set in the time of the war helps to add depth to the story and allows for interesting twists in the novel.

Flashbacks make up a substantial part of the novel, each flashback revealing something that the readers had not known before. “The scared war,” he says, closing his eyes. “God, but I was scared. I messed my pants. One day running across an open field….” (Cormier 72). This was a
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However, he does not want to dishonor his family by committing suicide, so he goes to war. “I could not die that way. Soldiers were dying with honor all over the world. Noble deaths. The deaths of heroes. How could I die leaping from a steeple? The next day I boarded the bus to Fort Delta,” (Cormier 104). The war has provided Francis with a way to end his life, without jeopardizing his family's honor. So the war has given Francis an escape he needs and a means to an end. However, the fact that Francis survives helps to create the entire plot of the book. If the setting had not been during war times, then Francis would have never had to endure the war, or experience the explosion of the bomb, which in turn introduced the new theme of treatment of the disfigured. Once more the setting has a paramount influence on the themes of the story as well as the
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