The English Patient is a novel written in 1992 by Sri Lankan-Canadian Michael Ondaatje, whose novel won the Booker Prize for best novel of 1992 and was adapted into an award-winning film in 1996. Penn State Nittany Lions This book was written in a non-linear narrative, so that it provides the reader a different way to go through the reading of a novel, and which sometimes creates dynamism in the novel narrative, but also it could create confusion in the reader. «The story tells about nationhood, identity, and displacement» (Gale, 2006), but also explores loneliness, and life and death; these are linked themes in the novel, and also are the points to be analyzed in the following essay. There are four main characters, So, «Kip goes to the patient because he represented the British world by which Kip was first seduced and then disgusted» (Langsford, 2009) The book also carries its characters to a driving to death and life. For instance, the Patient at the end of the story is ready to die after have gone through a field of painful and bittersweet memories. Hana went exactly oppositely; Thinking that there was no point to still live until she met the Patient, and then Kip and Carvaggio, she started the story searching for death. Kip´s job was by itself a way to face closely death, but he did not care about this. And finally, Carvaggio who was looking for a reason to live: vengeance, old friend´s matters or friendship.
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At the end the characters begin a whole new life, the patient dies, Kip abandoned Hana and starts again with a new family, she keeps sending to him letter, but as there is no answer from him, she gives up. So, the most important point is that no matter what has been lived, or what troubles have had to been sort, life has to continue for good or bad. The limited character in Michael Ondaatje’s novel, The English Patient, was Almásy. Penn State Nittany Lions Almásy was a man who was burned from head to toe, and whose identity is unrecognizable thus making him a limited character. The novel takes place in a villa where the man was being taken care of by Hana, a young nurse who stayed behind to take care of Almásy while the rest of the nurses escaped to a safer place to stay. She calls him the English patient because of his accent, though she is unaware of where he is from. The entire novel is focused on the history of the English patient, where he tells the story of his past to Hana, Caravaggio, and Kip. Although in the present Almásy is a limited character, the novel is based on the constant flashbacks of his One day, the English patient asked Geoffrey to pick him up with his private plane.
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Geoffrey took Katherine with him. ” It had been planned as a suicide- murder by her husband that would involve all three of us.” (Page 171) He crashed the plane, only trying to aim for the English patient who was waiting on the ground. He killed himself, and deeply injured Katherine. Penn State Nittany Lions The English patient took her in a cave where he promised her he would be back. He gets caught by the English Army who thought he is a spy, and is thrown in jail. When he is released, he began working for the German and helped their spies get to Cairo. When he leaves Cairo he finds the cave where he had left Katherine and he puts her dead body in a old plane buried under the sand. While flying the plane, it break’s down and he saves himself by using a parachute, although he was burning. This is when the Bedouin’s find him all burnt. Back to the present, Kip hears that America has bombed Japan, and he blames the English patient and threatens to kill him. He takes a motorcycle and drives off and never returns.