Recoil Themes & Symbolism

James Thompson
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The novel's central conflict revolves around Doc Luther's plan to frame Pat Cosgrove for murder. Pat has been in prison for fifteen years and has very little practical experience dealing with the world outside of jail. He is repeatedly told by many other characters that Doc intends to use Pat for nefarious ends but Pat finds himself so pleased to be on parole that he doesn't initially question Doc's seemingly altruistic behavior. Eventually, however, Doc's apparently boundless generosity begins to appear even to the napve Pat as somehow suspicious.

Over the course of the narrative, Pat begins to question the normal appearance of things. He quickly discovers that nearly every aspect of Doc's life is not precisely as it seems at first appearance. Doc's associates are not exactly what they purport to be, Doc's goals are inscrutably strange, and Doc himself appears often to be acting...

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This section contains 869 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Recoil Study Guide
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