Into The Lake Of The Woods

1203 Words5 Pages
People often have nicknames to describe details about themselves. Nicknames are not self-created but given to the person from friends or even comrades. In “Into The Lake Of The Woods” By Tim O' Brian, this is the case with John Wade, a former soldier that was nicknamed “Sorcerer”. John Wade is named Sorcerer because of use of magic in his youth and how the men is his squad would feel protected because of his magical powers. As Sorcerer is Wade's alter ego, it seems that it goes on to cost him dearly later in his life. Wade eventually ends up becoming governor of Minnesota and tries to run for U.S Senate. He loses in a landslide victory to his opponent as evidence of the My Lai incident is uncovered. His actions as Sorcerer start to make his life for the worse. It is seen later that Wade's wife, Kathy, is missing and Wade is soon suspected as he remains calm and not involved in the search party. O’Brien does not make it clear on how it Kathy's disappearance occurs but it is clear what happens. Sorcerer arrives again in John Wade as he pulls one final magic trick: to make Kathy disappear....forever. John Wade is an odd character in this novel as he goes through dramatic shifts in his life. Before the My Lai uncovering, John was seen as a respectable guy. He was physical attractive, had a “beautiful woman” (21) as his wife and he was polished. Behind all that though was something, disturbing to say the least. John would “wake up in the middle of the night screaming sometimes” (29). This was an indication that there were problems he was dealing with, and he was. John's depressing childhood and horrors of the My Lai incident eventually consumed him. John's childhood was rough because he had an abusive father which evidently, has s... ... middle of paper ... ...stanced himself from relationships to concentrate on the horrible reality of war. As Sorcerer, he was able to kill without doubt and follow orders. He was seen as the magic protector of the squad as he also performed magic tricks in war. Sorcerer was able to keep him and the others safe and survive the Vietnam war. In the book, John Wade and Sorcerer are one. They are qualities of one person that ultimately makes him. It seems as the book progresses, Sorcerer takes over more and more until towards the end when Wade goes looking for Kathy. It seems Wade is able to overcome his loneliness and deteriorating mental state to come back as the respectable, good looking man people saw him as. We may never know what happened to Kathy and if the evidence chapter is really true in figuring out her fate but we see John Wade let go of Sorcerer and becomes himself again.
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