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A Separate Peace

Average Rating 3.5
( 464 )
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5 Star

(164)

4 Star

(124)

3 Star

(88)

2 Star

(42)

1 Star

(46)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

19 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

A Separate Review

When i first came upon this book was in my AP English class in the 10th grade, with the limited list of books and the library out of the easy read books, I found A Separate Peace. As i showed and told everyone what i was reading they gave me mix reviews, Some said it wa...
When i first came upon this book was in my AP English class in the 10th grade, with the limited list of books and the library out of the easy read books, I found A Separate Peace. As i showed and told everyone what i was reading they gave me mix reviews, Some said it was too much of a guy book and was deemed boring and not worth the time to read. As i read on, i was captivated by the main character, and his struggle of guilt and jealousy of someone whom he called a best friend. I was angry and yet i found myself relating to the character of Gene. I mean if you had a friend who had qualities that you wished you could possessed, wouldn't you be jealous of that friend? You couldn't stay mad at Gene but you couldn't help but not love Phineas. They were two friends of the opposite side of the spectrum, yet they found a way to be friends. Phineas must have known the jealousy that possessed Gene, and the fault of the accident, yet Phineas, as marvelous as he was, forgave Gene. But it was not just about friendship going through it's rough and uneasy edges but it was about manhood, these boys going to school and figuring what type of men they will become while a war hung over their heads. These boys had their adventures in school, and when it comes to male friendship, its about who you're having the fun with and the strong bond that is created through fears, and understanding of the world. These boys were all shaped and touched by the essence that was Finny, he was their leader so to speak, and he was the one that they looked to for advice and reaction to the everyday commands of life and school.

posted by SunnyMay on June 13, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

SLOW TORTURE

This book is one of the worst i have read. I try to keep an open mind when i read books but this one was just plain dull. It was so boring and weird. If you like to slowly torture yourself, then this book is for you. I would put a no star on this book but the rating doe...
This book is one of the worst i have read. I try to keep an open mind when i read books but this one was just plain dull. It was so boring and weird. If you like to slowly torture yourself, then this book is for you. I would put a no star on this book but the rating doesn't go that low. Save Yourself!!!!

posted by Anonymous on January 6, 2008

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 124 review with 4 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted July 12, 2009

    Very well put together in many great plot choices

    Another summer another assignment but this book was one I did enjoy to read. It is one of those that you can just flow through and you can just enjoy reading (as long as you don't have an assignment). So without that assignment you will enjoy reading this book and you should like to read it and enjoy each of the very well put together characters. So enojoy.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I am glad to have picked this book up

    If my summer reading list didn't require me to do so, I would have never thought to look past the cover of this book. I enjoyed following the characters through their difficulties. The characters in this book have distinct personalities, sometimes with mysterious auras surrounding them. A great wartime novel that not only focuses on the war, but the kids growing up in that time period.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2009

    Best Book I've Read Yet

    Wow! When my English teacher told me we had to read this book for school I was like great, another boring book but I was so surprised to find that with every page I began to love this book more and more. The words just drew me in and I found myself feeling the emotions of those in the book. I was brought to tears at the end but, this is a great book. Truly a classic and I would recommend it for anyone.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2008

    Great piece of literature.

    I am a Graduate student and picked this up several weeks ago while looking for a light story to read this summer. I am pleasantly surprised at how much I truly enjoyed this book. While it may not appeal to everyone, the characters and setting truly added depth to this turning of age piece. Although there has been some discussion on the subtle gay overtones, the bond of friendship with the two main characters is what is truly meaningful and can be found in many male/male relationships whether gay or straight. Don¿t let this dissuade anyone from reading the book. It is a great piece of literature.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2014

    This darkly beautiful fiction novel A Separate Peace by John Kno

    This darkly beautiful fiction novel A Separate Peace by John Knowles is written specifically for young adults. Knowles did a very good job with this book being well designed and controlled. This book is a remarkable novel mainly about friendship between the two main characters, Gene and Phineas. Gene and Phineas, or Finny as he was called in the book, are two very different people. Gene is a very shy, reserved intellectual, while Finny is an outgoing, lively athlete. Even though these two boys are different, in many other ways than just the ones listed, their differences are what pulls them together and causes them to be best friends. 
    The campus, Devon, where the story takes place was situated out of the reach of World War II, most of the students weren’t even bothered by what was going on outside of their school. With graduation coming up the truth slowly revealed itself and it broke the tranquility that was within the campus, the students were suddenly faced with a shocking reality. What seemed like a small incident slowly progressed into a huge conflict that ultimately was entirely comprised of evil. 
    At some moments in the novel Knowles is careful not to reveal too much which makes the story compelling and also makes the reader not want to put down the good read. The novel is almost written in the form of a diary, the seemingly useless descriptions actually played a major role as the plot progressed and they could not be ignored. The friendship between Gene and Finny is amazingly woven with skill into the boringness of everyday existence. The tragic turn it takes sends the rest of the plot hurtling towards a darkness beyond imagining. 
    A Separate Peace explores the evil in the human heart, Gene even has to confront the evil within himself, but in doing that a light shines through which is the genuine love he has for his friend. The most powerful part of this book lies in it’s clear contribution of the immensity of the human nature, the many different sides, light and dark, which create a human being. Using the author’s own words, this book penetrates to, “that level of feeling, deeper than thought, which contains the truth.”

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2014

    It just took a bit long for it to start to get good. I think if

    It just took a bit long for it to start to get good. I think if I had to read this book on my own, I wouldn't have made it. Once I finished the book, I was glad I read it. It's very relatebable and good

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2013

    This book is really good. it makes you realize what can happen w

    This book is really good. it makes you realize what can happen when you let jealousy take over you. but you learn to over come and deal with it by doing good in return

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  • Posted October 4, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Not just a tale about coming-of-age.

    "A Separate Peace" by John Knowles takes place during the second World War at Devon School, a boys' preparatory academy in New England. Here on the homefront, the war doesn't seem very real. Sure, there are rations, and the seniors are being scheduled for physical training regimens to prepare them for enlistment after graduation - but in the lazy, carefree Summer session, the idea of war seems very distant to the other students. Especially to Phineas.

    For full review, please visit me (Les Livres) on Blogger!

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  • Posted September 27, 2011

    Incredibly Inspiring! You will love it! Great Life Lessons

    A Separate Peace tells the story of young boys who go to a boarding school in New England at the time of WW11. Gene, the main character, has at first feelings of jealousy and abhorrence towards his friend Finny, however these feelings later turn into admiration as they become better friends. Gene and Finny remain friends however after an accident in a tree, things change. The story takes place as a flashback from many years before and tells the life experiences each boy faces, as well as during the time of World War 11. A major message that the author shares is that of the desire to be like one of your peers, but your feelings of envy towards them. A part that I liked was in the end when Gene finally learns so much from his friend Finny, and changes his life around. A part that I did not like was when Gene shook Finny out of the tree. This is a great book that I would recommend to anyone. This is a fiction story that takes place during a real life event in history. Other recommended works include A French Lieutenant's Woman, Indian's Summer, and A Stolen Past. The overall rating that I give this book would be an eight out of ten.

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  • Posted May 8, 2010

    a really interesting book.

    I wanted to know what happened to the characters. It also gave me a perspective into another place and time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2010

    Seperate Peace

    This book is filled with good characteristics and an interesting yet mundane plot. I expected great things at the begining yet was kind of disapointed to find how it ended. Though i didnt like the plot i enjoyed they way it was written.

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  • Posted August 26, 2009

    A Seperate Peace- a good read just NOT great -

    A Seperate Peace by John Knowles was a good read however after the final page just did not make it a great read in my opinion. The story is based at a New England college- Devon in New Hampshire during WW II. The main characters Gene and Phineas aka Finny are roomates and friends ALWAYS compeating against eachother and Phineas has MANY admirable qualities including that of a great athelete and one of innocence. The focal point of the story is the tree and the limb that stretches out over the schools river that in the end is the reason for the friends to be torn apart and accusations to be made. The story has some great characters and the ending is sad. I must say I read through the book quickly, it was not boring, however in the end it just did not seem great to me or to satisy inreading it again one day.

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  • Posted March 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Seperate Peace

    This book was so good! i loved it! i had to read it for my English class this year and i really got into discussing it! it's a great story that teaches about friendship, jeaslousy, and finding yourself!

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  • Posted December 18, 2008

    Unexpected

    the book was kind of hard to understand but the thing was how they were treated by the way you act and the ways the could do things with out even thinking that something bad would happen if yuo do what your are told because even though they didnt what to do anything dum they did it anyways just because they felt that if they didnt do it they would be shove into a lonly world so what better than doing somethying crazy and hurt yourself.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2008

    Not bad

    Pretty good book. The relationship between the 2 main characters reminded me of every best friend I had at that age. Makes you think back about the care free attitude of being a teen age boy again, what its like to live for the day and wonder what the future holds. The author developed the plot pretty good and there was some meaning at the end. I like when the author comes full circle and adds value at the end of a book. I rate this one 4 stars

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2008

    Read between the lines

    Im in 9th grade and i just finished reading this book. When i first heard it was about World War II i was not excited at all. And while reading the book i was so bored and confused. Luckily i have a good teacher and once he explained everything i realized that it is an excellent book. Everything is a methaphor for life and growing up and if you read deeper into it, it can be very moving.

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  • Posted October 19, 2008

    Didn't want to read it....but loved it

    I had to read this book as a part of my English class in High School. I didn't think I'd really like it because so far my school reading had been nothing short of boring, but as soon as the class started reading, I kept reading ahead and I couldnt stop. Its not a romantic teen book (which was what I was used to) but this book definitly left a lasting impression on me. I would definitly recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2008

    bonnie, eh books...

    mmm im reading this book for my 10th grade english class (summer reading). its an ok book. it really is kind of interesting after the first chapter. i mean come on, 'the kind of we, self-pitying november day when ever speck of dirt stands out clearly'? wtf is that suppose to mean? i guess if your into those books where you have to think a lot then you should read it. its a short book so i should get through it pretty fast...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2008

    I was never one for the classics, but..

    I always dreaded having to read the classics in English class. I was assigned to read this for my Honors English 10 class over the summer. I was surprised at the fact that I actually liked it! It is a true, non-sugarcoated account of two boys in the midst of war of friendship and peace. This is a book you definitely want to read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2008

    A reviewer

    i read this book for my survey lit class just recently and i thought the book was gonna be really boring but i actually injoyed it. it kind of makes me think of my life... it was really easy for this class. this book actually made me get my grade up for this class.

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