Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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Character Development Comparison/Contrast (BR 2) One traumatic experience can alter the course of one's life. In Snow in August, the main character sees a brutal beating by the local bully, and from then on he is forced to live in fear by never saying a word about what had happened. In The Client, almost the same conflict, the main character witnesses and is told valuable information from a lawyer, who mob ties, and commits suicide. With this he is also marked for death by the mobsters to ensure his silence. Perhaps the saying "being at the wrong place and the wrong time" got these two characters in a heap of trouble.

In Snow in August, Michael changed when him and his mother were attacked by Frankie and the Falcons. They held Michael down and made him watch his mother get raped by Frankie. Michael fought his hardest but couldn't break loose.

He said "hurt me, it has nothing to do with my mother."(217) This showed Michaels bravery and respect. He repeated to shout "I won't tell no one, please stop." He would do anything to save his mother. Michael was never the same after that incident. He was in shock and would not leave his apartment building. He stopped meeting with the Rabbi, being an alter boy, and reading comic books. What happened to his mother traumatized him.

In the second book I read, The Client, the young boy changes after he is threatened with a knife to his neck by someone in the mob, to stay silent. Before that, Mark, the young boy, was a joker and wasn't really serious about anything. The terrible incident between him and the guy in the mob changed Mark. He was now extremely terrified and confused. He couldn't trust anyone with the information he withheld. He decided to stay quiet and not to show his feelings. He was not joking or playing around anymore. This was a matter of life or death. In court he said " I plead the 5th," which meant he wouldn't tell the judge anything. He was thinking about himself and his family, and how if he says a word he will be killed.

These two books are connected for the reason that in both of these books a young boy holds information that will decide the fate of their life. Each boy saw something that they weren't supposed to and were getting punished for it. They had information that both the police wanted and the other side wanted to keep quiet. You can learn from this connection that the saying "being at the wrong place at the wrong time" can get yourself in more trouble than you would ever imagine. In both of these books, both of the main characters had bad luck. Because of this, these characters were forced to live in fear and to hold their silence.

I have shown in this paper, how one traumatic experience can alter the course of one's life. In both Snow in August and The Client, the two main characters witnessed something that changed their life forever. Their lives were altered forever, not for something they had done, but for something they had seen someone else do.