Exploring Growing Up

Exploring Growing Up

  • Submitted By: vc2010
  • Date Submitted: 02/17/2010 5:00 AM
  • Category: English
  • Words: 1592
  • Page: 7
  • Views: 1

How does Nick Hornby in his novel About a Boy contrast his two main characters to explore the theme of growing up?

Humans mature differently from one another. Experiences and challenges faced throughout life cause some people to mature faster and others slower. In the novel About a boy by Nick Hornby, the two main characters are contrasted to explore the theme of growing up. The reader follows the journey of Marcus and Will over several months as they mature and learn more about themselves. Hornby brings together these two people who are on the opposite ends of the spectrum, making them appreciate each other and without them knowing, help each other become ordinary people living ordinary lives. Hornby contrasts the two main characters by purposely through the use of point of view structure and symbolism to emphasis the theme which runs through the novel. These techniques also help to establish and develop Marcus and Will throughout the novel.

Hornby uses third person, limited omniscient to allow the readers to gain insight of the feelings of the characters as they help each other grow and mature throughout their journey. The chapters of the novel are being alternated between Marcus’ point of view and Will’s point of view to reveal the thoughts and attitudes of the characters. Hornby opens his novel by using the technique of dual narration to show the humor surfacing from the different opinions of the two individuals. The utilization of dual narration also shows the contrast between Will, who is thirty-six years old and Marcus, who is twelve years old. The use of this technique also links the two characters’ lives and portrays how each person is missing something from their lives. At the beginning of the novel, Hornby illustrates Marcus’ thoughts as innocent and naïve using simple language for a child’s view. Marcus has limited understanding of relationships and is unsure about why his mother is depressed as “he didn’t know what it could be, apart from...

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