Comparison between the main characters from the book Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons and the poem Coat by Peg Boyers

Essay by NYSpinnerDanJunior High, 9th grade August 2008

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The main characters in “Coat” by Peg Boyers and and Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons share a bond of tragedy. They are both stories about ill-fated little girls who are stuck in unforgiving environments, and desperate to get out. Because of this, they do not get to live their lives in a descent way. Both girls had families in which the father was the antagonist and the mother did not do anything significantly helpful in order to protect her daughter from abuse. In their journeys to escape from their old lives, the girls find temporary refuge, and then sheer hopelessness. They fall victim to predators along their way. They also find friends, some that turn out to be predators in disguise. Although they receive different kinds of abuse, and at separate levels, the two girls still share an enormous connection.

In “Coat”, a little girl(the main character) was living in a world of lies.

Her family simply avoided her father by lying. The lies were so numerous and such a large part of the family's normal life, that the characters of other members of the family, the girl's brother and mother, can be discovered by simply examining their lies. Her father was verbally abusive to a point where the girl had to flee the house and search for another fatherly figure. He made fun of anything about her that he could think of, even about her “ridiculous“ pink robe and her “vacant” face. These comments were so absurd, that it seems as though he said these simply for breaking the silence, and not because his thoughts on the subjects were actually sincere. Although to the reader, these remarks might seem as silly and harmless, to Ellen, they were psychologically crippling. No matter what she did, she was never good enough...