Choices, Actions And Characters In Rene Denfeld's The Enchanted

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Action and Reaction Our world, and lives, are full of trials and tribulations. Its our choices, actions, or lack thereof when facing these difficulties that influence the direction of our lives. Rene Denfeld explores this wonderfully in her novel The Enchanted. Her characters all face trials, of varying degrees of intensity, that not only shape them but also the direction of their lives. She delves into this process thoroughly through her character of the white-haired boy. He transforms from an optimistic boy, to a hollow victim of abuse and a corrupt penal system, and finally into a man who did what was necessary to survive. When we first meet the whiter-haired boy, who is never named, he is a sixteen-year-old going to prison. He was…show more content…
This decision will change him forever, but perhaps it will give him his life back as well. This idea starts to form in his mind when he has a conversation with another broken man. The man reveals that Conroy planted some incriminating evidence, and the man was given three years on top of his original one. When he first hears this, the boy doesn’t really understand. But then “A dawning horror awakens in the white-haired boy. It fills his work boots with terror and gives cold air to the sagging of his pants behind his hollowing thighs.”[15] He understand now, that his two years may not end at two years. This broken man opens the boy’s eyes, explain why Conroy would plant evidence. “I was a favorite – just like you.”[16] The boy understands his position now, and searches for a way out. When he is working in the shop, he gets lost staring at the sharp blades used to cut the cloth. He knows that the prisoners make them into shanks, but if Risk got word that he had one there’d be trouble. “But he was a hand boy in his dad’s workshop. He looks at the glittering metal blades and thinks, I can make one.”[17] But he’s still slightly broken. “The boy just stands there like a ghost, his white hair hanging in a halo around his vacant face, the red lips standing out like a punch, his legs two thin sticks under his pants. The tender belly of youth has disappeared into a hollow cavern under his uniform, and sometimes when he reaches to his privates to piss he thinks there is nothing there. That little snail shell has just gone up and disappeared.”[18] He’s desperate to find a solution, so he can reclaim both his body and his life. But he knows that using the shank on Risk would do nothing for him, he’s not just Risk’s property anymore. So, he asks himself the question that will complete his transformation. “What will I do with

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