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A Separate Peace by John Knowles

A Separate Peace (original 1959; edition 2003)

by John Knowles

Series: Devon

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11,133174452 (3.58)229
Presents a novel about a friendship that develops between two boys during a summer vacation at the Devon school during World War II.
Title:A Separate Peace
Authors:John Knowles
Info:Scribner (2003), Paperback, 208 pages
Collections:Your library

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A Separate Peace by John Knowles (1959)


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English (173)  French (1)  All languages (174)
Showing 1-5 of 173 (next | show all)
Hands down one of my most favorite books.
Even though I normally love all the books I have had to read for school, this one is the best one I've read. ( )
  mygreaterperhaps | Mar 1, 2021 |
A coming-of-age tale that deals with the fall from innocence and the death of childhood. Neatly written, with some interesting structural devices. ( )
  Lirmac | Feb 1, 2021 |
Rating: 70% (3.5 stars)

Overall, the writing style did not feel very enjoyable for me to read. It wasn't too difficult for me to decipher most of the time, but it wasn't exactly pleasant for me to read either. Some of the time shifts felt awkward and some of the details felt pointless and over exaggerated. On the other hand, some may argue that is part of Gene's nostalgic storytelling and provides more realism, but for me personally, it was what prevented me the most from really getting into the novel.

By far, A Separate Peace was not the least enjoyable book I have had to read for school. However, I didn't really feel much emotionally until Finny fell down the stairs. I could tell where the foreshadowing was going with that as soon as it happened and was curious to see how it happened. Although, even then the writing style still felt quite heavy on a lot of insignificant details and was difficult for me to pull through.

I know this novel was written before people of the LGBTQ community began to be accepted in the Western world, but Gene and Finny's relationship felt more on the romantic side rather than the platonic side to me most of the time. Although my English teacher would never touch upon that subject, this was the first "classic" novel I have read for school that has shown any form of representation for this community, even if it was extremely subtle, so it did earn extra points for me in that area. ( )
  melonah | Jan 9, 2021 |
What the everlasting what was that?????? I liked parts and disliked parts, but sheesh, it felt slow and then rushed and then smooshed in places. Like, I really don't know how to feel about this book. I liked the discussion about the psychology of war and adolescent masculinity, but the characters and pacing just felt...off. ( )
  DrFuriosa | Dec 4, 2020 |
I expected it to end like that, in a knot of irony, and one of the friends dead. ( )
  Absolution13 | Oct 6, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 173 (next | show all)
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To Bea and Jim with gratitude and love
First words
I went back to Devon School not long ago, and found it looking oddly newer than when I was a student there fifteen years before.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Original language
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Presents a novel about a friendship that develops between two boys during a summer vacation at the Devon school during World War II.

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Book description
A Separate Peace is a story about two young boys who are close friends and go to Devon school together. Phineas, the more athletic of the two, and Gene, the more intellectually inclined seem to balance eachother out. The story is set in New England during WWII. It is full of insight, friendship, and also a tragedy. I really enjoyed this book because I found it to be one of the more interesting yet realistic stories that I have had to read for an English class. It was also fun because in my English class we had to make videos of different scenes of the book and I just had a lot of fun with it.
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