Cold Sassy Tree Character Analysis

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Adolescence is a period of time where memories are made, relationships are tested, and above all else, growth is not only literally undeniably going to occur, but also figuratively a complete necessity. As the protagonist of a young adult novel, it is quite obvious that there will be major changes to not only the main character, but to the less significant characters as well. This being established, it is clear that a bildungsroman (defined by as a novel about the moral and psychological growth of the main character) must be reviewed and analyzed to fully recieve the underlying message within the said novel. The Flamingo Rising by Larry Baker and Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns both create their own story using a young,…show more content…
One cannot be without the other, and authors alike take these customs into deep consideration when writing their novels. Baker and Burns both allow their characters to grow while still exhibiting an example of how loss can affect not only a family, nor a community, but one distinct single person. In The Flamingo Rising, death is brought upon the reader in the climax of the novel, while Cold Sassy Tree creates the basis of its tale on the death of one of the more morale characters in the book. It seems as though in both books there is the veiled message of religion and life after death. While most characters in Cold Sassy Tree are extremely religious (even going as far to say that days before her death, Will’s grandmother saw angels preparing to take her away), many of the characters in The Flamingo Rising seem to be more hesitant towards believing in a higher power, and are not so conservative when it comes to their beliefs. Both protagonists struggle with understanding their faith, especially after they have lost someone near to them. In The Flamingo Rising, Abraham’s father is shown in a light that shows he has long stopped believing in God since his parents both passed. Rucker’s character in Cold Sassy Tree seems to be less traditional than others from the given time period, telling Will that he should not “thank God” for saving him in a peculiar blunder dealing with train tracks, but rather understand…show more content…
From the beginning of both novels, each main character is introduced as someone who will more than likely become more aware of their surroundings and more perceptive to the situations they must face. For instance, Will begins the story of Cold Sassy Tree as a young, 14 year old boy who does not speak his mind often. As the story progresses it seems as though Will begins to reflect Rucker’s actions, as it seems that he has learned how to mature in Rucker’s steps. Rucker also mirrors Will’s attitude, becoming more joyous and appreciative of those around him. The Flamingo Rising allows more characters to bloom into young adults, as most of the main characters are around the same age. Abraham learns that some mistakes, though can feel so heartbreakingly crippling, can also help us move on from our despair and allow us to understand that everybody has made faults in their lives. After watching his mother succumb in such a terrible way, Abraham matures greatly, and ages with the knowledge that he had made a mistake that he can never

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