Runner Analysis

652 Words3 Pages
Runner, written by Robert newton, is a historical novel set in the Richmond Slums of 1919. The plot throughout the story was not completely dark and downhearted. Charlie Feehan, as the protagonist of the book, was a sixteen year old boy who suffers from great poverty, the loss of his father from the Spanish flue makes his situation worse and other characters struggle to raise their families. However, Charlie’s complicated problem twists into a well concluded ending; this indicates that teenage novels are not always gloomy, but may have a saddening storyline and setting. Charlie Feehan had a hard life before he won the Ballarat Miles competition. The protagonist was already in a difficult position at the start of the novel. After his father has passed away, Charlie had to ‘stepped into long the pants of adulthood’ and take on the responsibility of a grown up. This shows that he had to step in and be ‘…the man of the house’ at a very young age, whereas nowadays teenagers were barely independent even after they have graduated for university. In Charlie’s conditions, even a rabbit stew or a warm water bath was to be looked forward to on a Saturday night and warmth was from the ‘…pieces of fallen bark’ which he gathers from Mr Peacock. The protagonist was in an unfortunate and dreary state at the start of the novel. The idea of Runner being referred to as a sulky novel is also highlighted by the minor characters that were mentioned. Daisy Maloney, ‘…having lost her husband in the war…’ had to be a prostitute for a living. She must earn money to raise her kids, and with her attractive looks, ‘…she was a popular choice for men ’. Mr Squizzy Taylor’s debtors were also suffering from poverty. When Charlie came to collect the payment, they were unwilling to hand out their money Mr Cornwall was one of those names that were on the list who‘…can’t pay the money…’, they
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