"The Doomsday Book" by Connie Willis: Colin and Agnes

Essay by niki113090Junior High, 9th gradeA, March 2007

download word file, 3 pages 4.0

Downloaded 25 times

When I was younger, I wanted to have an identical twin. I always figured that by having a sibling who shared the same DNA as me, I could tell what I was really like to everyone else and how people truly perceived me. I eventually gave up on this wish of mine and realized that no matter how much I desired an identical sister, it wasn’t going to happen… but what if it did? In Doomsday Book by Connie Willis we are able to compare and contrast parallel characters. Many characters in this story seem to be linked to another character from a different century as “a crisis linking past and future” (Willis, back-cover) occurs. Two characters that this applies to are Colin and Agnes. Though from different times, these two young characters seem to share many similar traits and attributes. Colin and Agnes relate in a variety of ways: through loneliness, innocence, and maturing to help beyond their years.

It is the decisions that these characters make and the actions they take that greatly impact this story.

One of the subtle emotions that Colin and Agnes silently share is loneliness. For Colin, he first feels neglected by Mary, his great-aunt. As the hospital medical director, Mary holds the responsibility of finding a cure for the flu epidemic. Due to Mary’s hectic schedule at the hospital, Dunworthy decides to watch after twelve-year old Colin. After Mary decides to abandon the idea of visiting the boy, he goes to pick up Colin at the train station and tries to explain that, “His name is Colin Templer, his great-aunt was supposed to meet him” (72). Although his great-aunt seems to have no time for Colin, it is apparent that he still loved her. As the twenty-first century’s story drove to a climax,