Untitled Essay Research Paper Josh Holloway

Untitled Essay, Research Paper

Josh Holloway

Period 2, English 3-4

A Review: The Day of the JackalThe Day of the Jackal, written by Fredrick Forsyth, is a fictional novel

that displays the author’s brilliance by setting a mood and connecting

you with the characters. The Day of the Jackal takes place in post World

War II in France. The Jackal is a professional assassin, whose name is not

revealed, who is hired by a French terrorist group to kill Charles de Gualle,

the President of France. This terrorist group has had several failed attacks

on the President, and the Jackal is their last hope.

The mood the author sets is exceptionally suspenseful.

When Rodin, the leader of the terrorist group hears of the failed attacks,

the reader can feel his frustration and hatred towards the French government.

When Jean-Marie Bastien is vigorously preparing for the first assault on

de Gualle, the reader can sense the tension in the air and the feeling of

accomplishment when Bastien says, “That’s it! One hundred and fifty

bullets will have passed through the presidential car by the time it comes

abreast of the van. By God we’ve got it.” All this points to Fredrick

Forsyth’s amazing mood setting talent in this novel.

The reader feels at one with the many characters as they

each take part in the many small ventures that give rise to the climax. In

a scene where the Jackal is purchasing a fake identification card, the reader

can tell that the man making the card is an expert. Not because it was mentioned,

but because the man has such a large amount of information about I.D. cards

to offer. This same writing talent that displays the characters with subtle

suggestion instead of giving specific details is also shown when the Jackal

goes to purchase his sniper rifle. It is not mentioned earlier, but the way

the armorer talks about the mechanics involved with making a gun in which

the Jackal described shows that he is one of the best in the business. Forsyth

takes characterization to new level with the Jackal. The reader gets to know

the Jackal with a detached understanding of him. Forsyth keeps him a mysterious

being with no past and, as far as the rest of the characters in the book

are concerned, no present. The reader gets to know the Jackal’s meticulous

personality and his great care for every slight detail. This machine like

personality, added to the fact that no personal history beyond slight background

was given, keeps the reader from caring about the Jackal’s well being.

One can feel a detached fondness to this character, and want him to succeed,

but if, for instance, he was to die, one would feel no remorse.

Fredrick Forsyth has mastered some key literary elements

in a way not thought possible before. This author, although not on the “classic

book list,” is one of the greatest writers of modern times and should, with

out a doubt, be added to that list.


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