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Chemistry by Ron Rash

The story started off fairly normally at first before the religion came out at you. I didn’t understand the sudden turn towards religion and thought that it was a tidbit of information before we broke into the heart of the story. Then the story kept going and I realized that the religion was more than a plot device towards the story. It gave something for each character to latch on to. Something concrete that the mother and father had two differing opinions on and neither one of them wanted to give up what they believed in.

What I am still not sure of is how that effects Joel, the main character. The story is all about his relationship to his father and what he observes his father doing. Joel is such a silent character that I’m not sure how to relate to him. He doesn’t really say what he thinks about his father and is more intrigued with what his father is doing than what is actually happening to his father. In a way, Joel is like the audience and is in for the ride but doesn’t have a lot of say in the matters at hand anyway. It is more like Joel has accepted that he can’t figure out what his father was thinking and accepts that nobody but that person can know what is inside their own heart.

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