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In: Business and Management

Submitted By arshgur
Words 3714
Pages 15
HEROES
By Robert Cormier

Student notes for G

Chapter 1
Summary
Francis describes in stark and brutal detail his injuries sustained during the war, and how after the war he came to lodge with Mrs Belander in Frenchtown where he lived as a boy. He visits the church and says prayers for various important people in his life; thus we are introduced to some major and minor characters: Enrico, his mother and father, whom we learn are dead, and Nicole Renard and Larry LaSalle. Tension is created- he states his intention of killing Larry, but at this stage we do not know why. A flashback to the war introduces the theme of heroism- Francis has a Silver Star Medal, although he refuses to believe himself heroic – and reveals his love for Nicole.

Language use

My name is Francis Joseph Cassavant and I have just returned to Frenchtown in Monument and the war is over and I have no face. – compound sentence – pared gives only what he considers as essentials metaphor ‘ I have no face’ why is this effective? simile ‘ my nostrils are like two small caves’ – why is this effective?
Narration follows the patterns of speech – how?
What do we need to be aware of with a first person narrative?

Characters

Francis – disfigured and hiding, ‘I am like the hunchback of Notredame, my face likee a gargoyle and the dufflebag like a lump on my back’ – why is this allusion effective?
Mrs Belander – how do her actions show attitudes towards veterans at this time in America?

Structure

Starts with himself and full description; then hints at people and places giving small details about his past which we need to start to build on…

Setting

From his bedsit Francis is able to see St Jude’s church, The Wreck Centre and has already alluded to the war. These settings are significant in novel – as Francis reveals more about his life we are able to see the significance of each more clearly
Themes
The physical and emotional consequences of war.
What makes someone a hero? Francis has won the Silver Star but rejects the label of hero …
Narrative Framework
Begins in present day Frenchtown, with flashback to people of pre-war Frenchtown. Recalls the people and the places that have had an impact on Francis. This movement between tenses and times keeps the reader involved waiting to find answers to many questions…

Chapter 2
Summary
Leading on from the last chapter, Francis reminisces about meeting Nicole for the first time, and his adolescent desperation to talk to her. This leads to a description of his childhood in Frenchtown.
Language use
Pale purity- ‘
I knelt there like a knight at her feet
Rhetorical questions
I trailed after them
Like a sentry on lonely guard duty
Characters -FRANCIS – SHY, PASSIONATE, DREAMER, ROMANTIC. Francis gives his heart instantly and draws Nicole into a relationship in his own mind… the novel tracks this ‘ coming of age’ experience as Francis experiences ‘love’ for the first time.
Nicole – pretty, confident, innocent
Nuns – severe, disciplinarian instil a set of shared values and beliefs…
Setting
Frenchtown community and their interests gives a sense of shared experience and values
Themes
Youth, innocence, love community
Chapter 3
Summary
Francis disguises himself to walk through the town he grew up in- he fears recognition. He visits the building where Nicole lived as a child. In a flashback, he recalls discussing Nicole with a soldier from his hometown. During his time at war. We learn that he joined the army at 15, lying about his age. Back in the present, Francis is told that Nicole’s family left the area some time before. Back in his lodgings, Francis talks with Mrs Belander who feels sorry for his injuries. Francis goes to bed and dreams of his war time experiences- describing them in graphic detail. His description of the time of losing his face is particularly stark and brutal.
Language use – how does Francis’ simple language help convey the horror of his wartime experiences?
‘Like the ghost of the little girl Nicole once had been’ –what does this make you think?
Contrast – ‘try to avoid people I know’ – post war/ recognition of Norman ROCHELEAU IN ROUEN – wartime
ALLUSION TO ‘GREAT GATSBY’ ROMANTIC HERO AND HEMINGWAY AND THE HEMINGWAY CODE
A HERMIT – description Nicole – could easily apply to Francis now
Everyone wanted to go to war in those days to defeat the Japs and the Germans
Only two Frenchtown boys in uniform
Only to sustain myself for a while
Listing of names of men in platoon
The recitation begins like a litany
Realistic description of war short sentences , alliteration, onomatopoeia
I saw how young they were, boys with apple cheeks, too young to shave. Like me. – short direct sentences.
The next day, the grenade blows my face away.
Sun slashes my eyelids
Reference to mission and Larry Lasalle – differentiates between feelings for men in platoon and Larry Lasalle.
Characters
NORMAN Rochleau – a link to the past- and vehicle for filling in Nicole’s story
Names of men in platoon – important because they convey bonding and common struggle
German soldiers – description makes enemy human
Structure- particularly the use of flashbacks.The use of flashbacks meshes the past and the present. We began to see a movement of the prewar- war and post war Francis. We are given information to help explain the feelings that Francis has, the reason for his injuries. There is a return to his wanting to kill Larry, but we still do not know why. This serves to keep the reader guessing as to what time frame/event/relationship this fits into.
Themes
War, loss of innocence, camaraderie, death, man’s inhumanity to man
What could Larry La Salle have done to Francis?
Whilst we are not clear as to why Francis wants to kill Larry, we do know that this anger and desire for revenge is ‘out of character’ because Francis appears to be a selfless, loving character. The allusion to The Great Gatsby may be important. Gatsby is a great literary ‘hero’ with a complex psychology,who is ready to shift the boundaries between RIGHT AND WRONG in order to pursue an idealised romantic love. In a similar way the allusion to Hemingway is significant- Hemingway asserted that men should live by a code – one which bound them to act within a set of personal values – integrity, courage, dignity, loyalty etc. rather than expect rely on notions of natural justice and equality to right wrongs. The movement between past and present allows us to glimpse the development of France as he moves from a naïve innocent child towards adulthood. We are yet to find out what drives and motivates Francis to want to take Larry’s live, but we can see that the meshing together of past and present in the narrative and Francis’ mind is a strong factor in this.

Chapter 4
Summary
Francis introduces the Wreck Centre- a key place in his childhood and in this story. Francis meets Arthur Rivier who buys him a drink, and he describes the conversation with the local men, who reminisce about their school days. No- one recognises him, and he talks very little, wanting to glean information about Larry LaSalle. At the end of the conversation he heads for the Wreck Centre, despite having told himself that he will not go there.
I wanted to be like them, these heroes, fighting the and the Germans, going off to battles on land and sea. I was impatient to reach the age when I could join them in that great crusade for freedom.
Creating a camaraderie in the bar, a fellowship that I wish I could be part of.
‘You earned the right not to talk’
I am not the hero he thinks I am, not like the other veterans here
Characters- minor characters show how war has affected everybody, the way that these characters are planning for the future, a sense of shared suffering – contrast with the way that Francis is choosing to remove himself from this sense of the future.
Setting- The bar and the sense of camaraderie that has grown up amongst the ex soldiers.
Themes
Bonding/friendship/heroes
Alienation – Francis seem to be separated from the other people around him despite having gone through the same experiences – so the reader is waiting fro him to ‘explain’ this.
Chapter 5
Summary
Francis describes the Wreck Centre- it is now boarded up and run down. In reminiscence he recalls the ‘tragic story’ that caused the Centre to be closed down, before Larry LaSalle started activities for the local children there. The flattering description of Larry comes as a surprise and wrong-foots the reader, as we know Francis’ intention of killing him. Further surprises come- Larry, it transpires was an inspirational figure to the children and helped to bring out the best in each individual. Note however the foreshadowing- there are rumours that Larry has “gotten into trouble in New York City”. This raises questions in the mind of the reader as to his past. Back in the present, Francis recalls that Joey LeBlanc felt a sense of doom about the place, and that he died n the war. He now feels that Joey was right about the place- again creating suspense and raising questions in the mind of the reader.

Language use

Pun ‘wreck centre to show how place may have sinister vibes
It became a Fenchtown tradition for children to listen at the door at the door at midnight on the night of the full moon as a rite of passage.
I was in the seventh grade, the year that Nicole Renard came into my life, when the halls transformation began.
Marie- Blanche lay bloody and dying
Dennis o’ Brein, paralysed for the rest of his life
Hervey hanged himself that evening
Attacking the building in a frenzy of activity
I had never been a hero in such places
Characters
A tall, slim man stepped into view, a lock of blond hair tumbling over his forehead, a smile that revealed dazzling movie star teeth.
Is that his real name?
Larry LaSalle had broad shoulders of an athlete and the narrow ips of a dancer. He was both.
He was most of all a teacher
He took me in after my father died
We knew little about him and he discouraged questions
Why did h turn his back on show business and return to French town?
Dark hints
Like a rare specimen, birdlike and graceful
Joey Leblanc, who died on a beach on iwoJima
Structure

Setting-The wreck centre with its camaraderie, activity and a place to
Juxtaposes Francis’s lonely life with the craving for somewhere to belong.The glamour of Larry with the other adults around him. The silence of Uncle Louis to the effusive encouragement of Larry
Chapter 6

Language use

I watch for that Fred Astaire strut and that movie star smile. – repetition – reinforces glamour that Larry has.
Think of the wrapped up gun in my duffle bag and I’m impatient for him to come back.
I see the twitching in the corner’s of Arthur’s mouth, the way his lips seem tugged by invisible fingers.
Armand stares off into space, looking at something nobody else can see…
George Richeleau tugging at his pinned up sleeve… Maimed and haunted by their experience of war?
Characters –
Larry has earned the silver star for heroism .Francis is hero.
Minor characters used to illustrate the many consequences of war.
We learn that both are Silver Star heroes – are we heroes because others assign us this role?
Setting – references to the rain, and the bar – this time we begin to see how the men have been affected by the war.
Themes -heroism , appearance and reality
Chapter7
Language- The table tennis match uses short sentences to create tension and suspense. Sharing Francis’s thoughts lets us see how interested Larry is in giving Francis a confidence boost ,whilst taking care not to make it too easy allows Francis to save face. What does this tell us about Larry and Francis and their relationship?
Characters- Francis is supported and empowered by Larry-‘FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE A CONFIDENCE SWEPT THROUGH ME.’
Larry appears self-less builds on strengths of each individual child, gives up time willingly to give them support. His appeal is continuing to build.
Themes- particularly Appearance and Reality – What is Larry really like?

Chapter 8

Language- ‘the scared war’ – why is this effective?
‘we weren’t heroes we were only there’ – how does this challenge our perceptions of heroism?

Characters

The Frenchtown boys struggling to get back to a ‘ normal life’
Setting- Cold, bitter and inhospitable
Chapter 9
Language- ‘ patriotic fever’ describes the drive that young men had to enlist
‘Larry’s action became for us the beginning of wartime in Frenchtown’ again Larry is a leader and role model
Allusion to Hemingway - Farewell to Arms – Francis’s favourite novel
Newsreel opens up the world – another move from innocence to experience
‘Dancing in the dark’ – symbolic, backdrop for what is happens in the relationship with Larry two events placed together – the party at wreck centre and the bombing of pearl harbour. first big war hero – again a positive reference to Larry
Characters-Nicole and Francis’s developing relationship.
Larry growing into role of ‘heroic’ soldier – still has strong grip on the psyche of the town
Structure-Flashback used to show the relationship growing and an ever-present heroic Larry. As young people they are finding much in common and Francis is growing in confidence with Nicole’s encouragement. juxtaposition of Larry becoming a hero and Nicole and Francis becoming close. juxtaposition of make-believe in cinema and reality of newsreels. Children are being drawn into the real world. Francis is able to express his own growing confidence around Nicole, and the reader can relate to the sensitive, passion of a ‘first love’.
The cinema in which the relationship grows is important – emphasises the make- believe of the films and the reality of the newsreels. Seeing Larry on the newsreel again goes back to the idea of movie-star looks- and again emphasises his heroic qualities.
Themes- War/love/heroism

Chapter 10

Language
I saw what the boy had seen – my face – illustrates shock at own appearance
I don’t see me anymore but a stranger slowly taking shape – why is this effective?
I start to close doors. Not real doors but doors to the future – illustrates mindset and ‘despair’
The smell of ashes fills the air, a damp incense burning for Larry LaSalle’s homecoming. – takes us back to the ‘ odors of forgiveness’
His second homecoming. Linking death – WITH Larry – own death in particular – because once he has completed his mission his own life does not appear that important to him. Again the disguise is a way of hiding his mission, his desire for revenge and his intention to kill himself.
Characters- Enrico – has given up hope and is waiting to commit suicide. Francis also has given up hope and is planning own suicide, once he ha completed his ‘ mission’
Structure-Again meshing of past and present. Francis realises that his own appearance is horrific .This mirrors the way that he feels about himself. His physical disability mirrors the way that he is disabled emotionally– not being able to think beyond killing Larry. Suspense created by the addition of more detail – as readers we want to know how Larry has changed their lives forever.
Themes- Love and hate, appearance and reality.
Chapter 11
Language use Opening sentence - formal - Lt. Lawerence Lasalle, US marine Corps,holder of the Silver Star for acts of heroism in the steaming jungles of Guadalcanal in the South Pacific, hero of newsreels and radio broadcasts, was coming home on furlough - lists Larry’s achievement gives Larry kudos, becomes heavily ironic when we eventually discover what Larry has done to Nicole and other young women.
Dialogue between Larry/Nicole/Francis exposes Larry’s power over both Nicole and Francis – also reveals Francis’s willingness to accept everything that Larry says ‘ we always did what Larry Lasalle told us to do’- note change from Larry to use of full name – once more registers his power
I made my way…. Long sentence shows Francis inability to do anything
Tension created by length of sentences and use of questions
It is amazing that the heart makes no noise when it cracks – summarises the damage this event has done to Francis.
Characters- Larry is described as a ‘bright pied piper’ and there is an allusion to pre-war depression which had made lives so hard for people – is the pied piper a positive figure?
Resplendent … the old movie-star smile, skin tanned and glowing – returns to the appeal and attraction that Larry has had from the outset

Larry was our war hero , yes but he had been our hero long before he went to war – shows the regard that young people ( AND THE COMMUNITY) have for Larry.

His eyes full of her – gives us some hint of Larry’s interest in Nicole – what kind of interest has it become?

‘we have to keep the world safe for these young people- they are our future…’ again becomes ironic when we discover the real Larry
‘stay close to me’ – has Nicole sensed something that Francis is unware of? Why is the tune that Larry chooses to dance to ‘ Dancing in the Dark’ important?
Turning the knob – whistling – shows that he is care fee – a shock when you realise that he has just raped someone.
Structure-We are led through a series of emotions – the expectancy of arrival, the jubilation and celebration to the betrayal of trust and the rape. This sequence challenges our impressions of Larry – he is now an aggressor and has duped both the town but more especially Francis and Nicole.. We witness the rape through Francis perspective and this makes it even more terrible because we have know that Francis is in awe of Larry and deeply indebted to him, and we know that he loves Nicole and desperately wants to be her ‘ protector’
Setting-Hot and humid reflects mood
Wreck centre has been opened for a ‘celebration’, which is ominous if we think about what happened there before
Themes- Betrayal/ hiding
The flashback again gives us lots of information in order for us to develop an understanding of Francis’s mission, Larry’s betrayal and the rift between Nicole and Francis.
Chapter 12
Language –
‘I haunted sixth Street’ is effective because? as if I was part of the hell that I had earned – is effective because?

Characters

A kind of bogeyman who does terrible things like letting his girl get hurt and attacked - how Francis sees himself now
As if all your sins had been revealed and there was no forgiveness for them – this tells us what?
HIDING – ENTERS CHURCH IN DARK – Francis has always had a tendency to hide – initially because of his shyness, now we see the cost of hiding to himself and to Nicole -
Heatwave – reflects tension in relationship between Nicole and Francis
Themes - LOVE/HATE/GUILT/DESPAIR
What are the reasons Francis tries to kill himself? What prevents him from carrying out his suicide attempt? What does this tell us about Francis’s values and beliefs?
Chapter 13
Language – repetition – ‘bestowing that movie – star smile’ – this now has different meaning – we now associate it with someone who is false/ fake…
Interestingly Francis learns about Larry by eavesdropping on a conversation – again returning to the theme of hiding.
There is a change in the way that Larry is brought to our attention – what?
This is reinforced by the description of where he is living – how?

Chapter 14

Language use

The gun is like a tumour on my thigh –this is effective because? Note how Francis thoughts are italicised – why is this effective
Use of rhetorical questions creates tension – juxtaposed with Larry’s casual ‘come on in’ Note how Francis thoughts are italicised – why is this effective
Go Francis. Leave me here. Leave everything here, the war, what happened at the wreck centre, leave it all behind with me – why is this significant?
The sound from this distance is almost like a ping-pong ball striking the table – returns to the past – how?
Also shows how Larry has ‘let’ Francis win again – why?
There is a stark change in Larry -He is pale, eyes sunk into the sockets….he seems fragile now…
The sweet young things…
The terrible thing is that we love our sins
Does the one sin of mine wipe away all the good things? What do you feel about Larry now?
Themes-Sin/revenge/guilt/forgiveness/heroism
Chapter 15
What is the purpose of this chapter? How effective is it?
Chapter 16 Language use
Parlour of plain furniture –
Painting of saints on panelled walls – why is this effective
You’ve come a long way – why is this effective?
The ball when it lands doesn’t have the sharp sound of a ping-pong ball on a table. Or a gunshot – why is this effective?
Note use of italics to illustrate Francis thoughts – how effective is this technique/

So we talk… etc. past/future

We run out of words – this is effective because?

I don’t want you to see me this way

But affection is not love – what has Francis learned about Nicole and himself through the course of this meeting?

Characters
The long black hair that fell to her shoulders has gone… How else has Nicole changed?
You weren’t to blame for what happened- Why is this significant?
Now I am starting to find out what I am, who I really am… How did the relationship with Larry stop both Nicole and Francis from finding out what they could really do and be?
My good Francis. My table tennis champion. My Silver Star hero… Why is this effective?
Themes- Forgiveness/heroism/guilt
Chapter17
Language -On their way somewhere – why is this effective?
Listing of names – why is this effective?
Maybe….repetition leaves a slight doubt about the future – what do you think he will do now? ‘nice and comfortable’ – why is this description of the bag important? Does it tell us anything about Francis’s midset?
Setting- Train station – journey, new places/new futures?
Themes-forgiveness

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– Evaluate the effectiveness of the use of marketing techniques in marketing products in one organisation…...

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