Thursday, February 9, 2012
The Chocolate War
I had not read The Chocolate War since it came out originally! Yep, I am dating myself... I had forgotten most of it. While some of the descriptions clearly show the era in which it was written, the themes are universal.
There is no clear "happy ending" for all involved. Jerry, as the "underdog with a heart", doesn't come out on top; Archie isn't punished for his actions; Obie doesn't finally triumph over Archie and become his own man. The tension is so well written that I was uncomfortable the entire time I was reading it.
The thing I loved the most was that, even though it was written 38 years ago, I could absolutely see teens (mostly boys I think) relating to it today. Robert Cormier's writing doesn't pander to what people think teens would read. He doesn't play down language or use "easy" words. He bolts headlong into the story and never looks back.