Interpreting Literature-Tom Bailey "The Grace That Keeps This World"

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Interpreting Literature
Tom Bailey had established a structure for his novel “The Grace That Keeps This World,” that always makes the reader truly read between the lines. There are many ways that readers of this novel could go about interpreting the literature. I am going to focus my paper on a certain aspect of the structure of the novel. While reading this book, I noticed how Bailey had used the main characters’ viewpoints to tell the story to the readers. I admire how the novel was very well-written and structured. I will interpret my paper on the meaning that I got out of the novel by “reading between the lines.” The main characters; Gary, Gary David, and Kevin, make a personal journey throughout the novel and deal with their own struggles just to try to find themselves.

Gary, father of Gary David and Kevin, has a struggle throughout the book dealing with feelings. He tries to keep control of himself throughout the novel which in the end, ends up in irony when he “loses control” and makes a huge mistake by killing his own son. At the beginning of the novel, Gary is trying to come to terms with Kevin, his youngest son. In a perfect world, Gary would like to see his sons carry on in Gary’s footsteps but he realizes that Kevin does not want any part of it. Kevin wants bigger and better things but Gary just does not understand why he wants to be so different. His eldest son, Gary David, and Kevin are hardly alike. Gary David is following his fathers’ footsteps by being a forester but Kevin on the other hand; is going to college and is dating a girl from New York City, named Jeanie (Bailey 43). It seems that each time Gary attempts to see eye to eye with Kevin, that Kevin just cannot be mature about it. He feels that if Kevin truly wants his father to see him as his own person then he needs to step up and act like an adult and act more maturely than he has been. Trying to come to terms with Kevin is just one of Gary’s many struggles that was noticed...
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