Summary Of A Separate Peace By John Knowles

1447 Words6 Pages

Best friends, share a special bond. The bond of friendship is a strong bond, and it is often unbreakable. Best friends are supportive and love each other no matter what. What happens, though, when one of the friends begins to grow jealous of the other? Does the friendship persevere? Or, does the friendship fall apart? In A Separate Peace by John Knowles, two best friends seem to have this unbreakable friendship bond. Finny and Gene are two boys trying to survive their teenage years at The Devon School. The two are best friends until the unthinkable happens. Gene begins to grow jealous and envious towards Finny. This jealousy and envy causes Gene to do the unthinkable. He does something that he can never take back. This sparks a war. It is …show more content…

Gene becomes consumed with grief and sorrow because Finny shattered his leg. He begins to question why he caused Finny to fall. Shortly after Finny’s fall, Gene begins to struggle with an internal war. This war is composed of grief, regret, and harsh realizations. As the novel continues, he struggles with his own thoughts. Gene continues to struggle to cope with his actions, he is at war with his conscience. The novel being told in first person is crucial to the reader's knowledge of Gene’s feelings and thoughts. Without insight into Gene’s thoughts, the novel would be able to portray the theme surrounding internal warfare. Gene has many regretful thoughts concerning Finny’s fall throughout the remainder of the novel. One example can be found in chapter seven. On page one hundred and one, Gene says to himself “... there was always something deadly lurking in anything I wanted, anything I loved. And if it wasn’t there, as for example with Phineas, then I put it there myself.” In this quote, Gene shows regret for having jealousy and envy for Finny in the first place. As the narrator, Gene is explaining to the reader that there is always something imperfect in the things or the people he wants. Except this was not true in the case of Phineas. Gene put the strain on their relationship, and he continues to regret …show more content…

Gene is still trying to find a way to cope with his actions that took place in the tree. Internally, Gene knows that he can never fully forgive himself for what he did to Finny. Gene conveys this harsh reality to the reader throughout the remainder of the novel. In chapter eight, the reader can see Gene being reminded of the actions he took that caused Finny to shatter his leg. On page one hundred and eleven, Gene thinks to himself “He hobbled now among the patches of ice. There was one certainty that Dr. Stanpole had given - Phineas would walk again. But the thought was there before me that he would never walk like that again.” Once again, Gene is speaking in the first person. Here, Gene is giving the reader of A Separate Peace further insight to his thoughts and feelings. On page one hundred and eleven, Gene has to face the harsh reality that Finny will never walk the same as he used to. Finny will also never be an athlete again. This harsh realization adds to Gene’s war that is going on inside of his mind. While reading this page, the reader gets a front-row seat to this unsettling realization that Gene

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