Describe the narrator of Mosquito Coast in chapters 1-3.

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accessteacher's profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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It seems quite clear that the quality that stands out most about Charlie Fox, Allie's teenage son, is his unquestioning devotion to his father and the way that he looks up to him, almost idolising him in the way he acts towards him. Whilst this changes in the later chapters of this novel, the initial chapters present us with Charlie's god-like devotion of his father. He does not argue against Allie when he tells them that they are leaving America to voyage to Honduras and he even accepts Allie's statement that the US is being destroyed without arguing against it or even doubting it for one moment.

Thus what stands out about Charlie in the first three chapters of this novel is his unquestioning loyalty and obedience to his father's ideas and words. This is a perfect start to this novel which focuses on how Charlie matures and gradually comes to resist and question his father, because at the start he is so devoted to him and his ideas.

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sullymonster's profile pic

sullymonster | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Charlie is thirteen when the book begins, and his youth lends an innocence and honesty to his narration. Like Huck Finn, young Charlie is uncorrupted by society and more likely to give on unbiased account of his father, not tainted by the social morality of adulthood that influences all of our spoken opinions. He does not overanalyze his thoughts; he just expresses them. As a result, his early narration becomes like that of a reporter. His sentences are short and to the point, providing brief descriptions but little commentary. As time goes on and his character grows, the narration will shift. Slowly, there will be more commentary from an older Charlie who is no longer just recapping the words and actions of his father but trying to place the man into his own understanding of the world. 

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