The Green Mile Essay, Research Paper
For my third quarter book report I read The Green Mile written by Stephen King.
This book is about an old man, Paul Edgecomb, recalling his experiences when he worked
as the cell block captain in Cold Mountain state penitentiary. Paul was the cell block
captain of death row in this Alabama correctional institute.
This story takes place in a nursing home. The narrator Paul is writing a book about
when he was cell block captain in 1932. During the time he is writing his book he points
out how people never change, how there is always the bully, and so on. He compares
writing the book to a time machine. Both seem to take him back to 1932, and every last
detail is clear.
This book made me feel involved. As the reader you start off in the
nursing home, with Paul, and you go through his days until he is done writing the book.
You follow him and hear everything he thinks and does. Stephan King does an excellent
job using many detail, and sensory images.
The title fits the book perfectly. On death row Paul describes the floor as being a
lime Green, and death row is often called the mile. Therefore, in this book Paul and the
other death row guards call their territory the Green Mile. Another reason this is a good
title is because more than three fourths of the book takes place on the Green Mile. Not
only is the Green Mile the name of the cell block that Paul and the other guards head, but
in this book it is referred to as an idea. The Green Mile is used as a synonym to the road of
death. During his account of what happened in 1932, he speaks of a gift he has earned.
This gift keeps him from dying in a timely fashion. So the end of the book after he has
wrote his book his, and has nothing left to live for he comments on the gift he has, and
says “but sometimes, oh God, the Green Mile is so long”.
Back in 1932 a prisoner arrived on the Green Mile, his name was John Coffey. He
was a well built, tall, could not remember much, and was African American. He was found
guilty of murdering, and raping two young girls. Because he was African American, in
Alabama, in 1932 he had no chance of being acquitted. On top of that, he was found with
the victims in his arms. After he was in on the Green Mile for a while, Paul wondered if
this man could have committed such a violent crime. Paul discovered John Coffey had a
healing power. Then after further investigation, Paul learned there was no way John could
have committed those crimes. So Paul was faced with the issue of John Coffey’s
innocence, and if he could work out a way of letting Coffey go free, or die.
Stephen King is the author of nine screen plays, and more than thirty books. He
live in Bangor Maine with his wife Tabitha King. He has won many awards, and his books
are always on the top of the New York time best sellers list.