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Date Posted: 01:25:12 03/14/21 Sun
Author: JakeEldon (Devastated)
Subject: [Ending Discussion]
In reply to: JakeEldon 's message, "Best Book I've Read All Year: The Absolutist by John Boyne" on 17:53:07 03/13/21 Sat

We knew going in it would be sad but I was struck by the lack of closure for poor Tristan. I'm going to devour analysis of this story wherever I can find it because there is a lot to think about.

On the surface I am left believing that Will is a terrible person for inflicting that level of emotional trauma on Tristan.

You're left wondering though, maybe Will didn't mean it. Will was scared that he was going to die and inflicting pain on someone who he believed had betrayed him. If Tristan was less of a coward then Will would be alive.

Though in almost a cosmic joke it can be seen that Will did all of it to punish Tristan for not reporting the war crime and backing him up.

But then there are the small abuses where Will told Tristan to fuck off and coldly neglected him on the front after they had sex.

I want to like Will. The whole novel builds him up on the same pedestal that Tristan clearly holds him, a near deification from Tristan. But he's a BULLY in the end right before he dies and throughout their time together. He tells Tristan to fuck off after taking what he wanted from him and inflicts emotional abuse that destroys Tristan in the end.

Will definitely is not worthy of the pedastal that Tristan holds him on. I can also see Will's point of view re: Tristan. Tristan is a coward, someone who lets a defenseless child get murdered rather than stand up to authority. Someone who is kicked his whole life and just accepts it.

Tristan is unreliable in how he confuses love and lust as well. He believed he was in love with Peter when he wasn't.

What an incredible book. So much to think about involving these characters. I wish that we had gotten closure, I wish that Tristan had gotten closure instead of unresolved questions.

I had hoped for one more interaction, a secret letter apologizing for it all or something like that. Which interestingly is almost certainly how Tristan felt. It is a very real emotion that is evoked through the story. Lack of closure is a reality of life and doesn't that suck.

Absolutely Incrediable

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Replies:

  • Some more recommendations.. -- Mike, 12:51:12 03/14/21 Sun

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