Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Review: A Separate Peace

A Separate PeaceA Separate Peace
John Knowles

Set at a boys boarding school in New England during the early years of World War II, A Separate Peace is a harrowing and luminous parable of the dark side of adolescence. Gene is a lonely, introverted intellectual. Phineas is a handsome, taunting, daredevil athlete. What happens between the two friends one summer, like the war itself, banishes the innocence of these boys and their world.

What can I say? I was blown away by this novel. Considering it is a classic, I probably would not have picked it up on my own and for that, dear English Teacher, I thank you. 

The writing is extraordinary- throughout the story there is an eerie sense of darkness; you can just feel something bad waiting to happen. The descriptions really helped you BE there, get the feel of the scene. There were also some amazing quotes and nuggets of wisdom like these:

“What I mean is, I love winter, and when you really love something, then it loves you back, in whatever way it has to love.” 

“Sarcasm... the protest of those who are weak.” 

“Never say you are five feet nine when
you are five feet eight and a half" was the first one I encountered.
Another was, "Always say some prayers at night because it might turn
out that there is a God.” 

And many more that Goodreads didn't list and I don't have my copy on me to find... this book was pure beauty. The whole story was like a metaphor, and a heartbreaking one at that. There are so many questions to ask and things to discuss- but I guess I'll just have to wait till my class finishes the novel because I read ahead, I was so enamored by the novel.

Recommended to everyone. Rating:

1 comment:

  1. It was so great to run across this review today. I've been reading a lot about people complaining about being forced to read classics in school. They aren't always fun, but I learned so much about reading and language and story from them. And, I've never had trouble finding contemporary stuff on my own. I don't regret any of the books I had to read as a student.


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