A Separate Peace
Setting: The work is set at Devon, a private boarding school in New Hampshire on the Atlantic Coast during World War II. Two rivers run through the school's campus, one is the Devon River (fresh water) and the other is the Naguamsett River (salt water, swamp like consistency). Some of the work's action revolves around a predominate oak tree overhanging a creek.
Background Information: The novel begins with the main character, Gene and Finny, at Devon for a summer session. The school hopes that this session will allow the students to receive a diploma before they are drafted on their eighteenth birthday. Gene and Finny are roommates and friends at the school. Finny is a natural athlete who also acts as a leader for the other boys in the school; devising games like Blitzball, and organizing the Winter Carnival. However, Gene is more academically oriented in his interests and is jealous of Finny's natural ability in sports, a quality he lacks in academics.
Gene Forester: This character is the protagonist whose envy of Finny eventually leads to his untimely demise. He is also suspicious of Finny's motivations since his cynical attitude causes him to think that no individual could be as completely pure as Finny. So, he projects his own devious nature on other people.
Phineas: He is a nonconformist who fails to acknowledge school regulations and tradition. This behavior is illustrated in his consistent lateness to dinner, wearing the school tie as a belt, wearing a pink shirt, and organizing the Super Suicide Society of the Summer Session.
Brinker Hadley: This character is an elitist student leader that is concerned about losing his power to Finny's popularity.
Edward Lepellier: He is an isolationist that was ridiculed by his classmates. He is...