“The Lost Boy”

1696 Words7 Pages
The fictional life and death of a twelve year old little boy named Robert is vividly articulated in this moving tale by Thomas Wolfe. The reader learns of the boy’s life through four well developed points of view. The reader’s first glimpse into Robert’s character is expressed through a third person narrative. This section takes place on a particularly important afternoon in the boy’s life. The second and third views are memories of the child, through the eyes of his mother and sister. His mother paints the picture of an extraordinary child whom she loved dearly and his sister illustrates the love that the boy had for others. Finally, an account from the narrator is given in the ending. It is in the last section of this work that the narrator attempts to regain his own memories of his lost brother. In the first section of the story Robert’s character is given a strong foundation. The young boy is described as having a “gentle face, perhaps too quiet and listening for his age” (2001). He is a wise boy who gives particular attention to detail. The reader discovers early on that the boy is budget conscious and particularly strict with himself regarding the matter. This is made obvious in the candy store scene with Mr. Crocker. After attempting several times to reason himself out of trading with the “stingy” candy store owner the child in him wins over. It is at this point the boy offers stamps, which he earned by running errands for the local Pharmacist, in exchange for his candy. The boy overpays the clerk by three ones. Robert respectfully asks the man to return the three stamps. Mr. Crocker insinuates that the boy must have stolen the stamps and he makes it known to the child that he does not like that kind of trading, a... ... middle of paper ... ...s one may establish a better understanding for theme, writing styles, and technique. Though “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is a full length novel and “The Lost Boy” is a short story the writings are comparable in the aspect of writing structure and key characters. One may also associate characteristics in Wolfe’s story with those in “Daisy Miller”. These stories are alike in the theme of life lost and different in many ways, as well. Harry, the leading character in Hemingway’s “The Snows of Kilimanjaro” led a very different life than that of young Robert but the writings held numerous resemblances. The four stories depict humanity through the life stories of their developing characters. In comparing and contrasting the literary works written by Wolfe, James, Hemingway and Twain the student develops as certain appreciation for the literary community.

More about “The Lost Boy”

Open Document