What is the role of Larry LaSalle in the novel?
Throughout the novel 'Heroes' Larry LaSalle is used to highlight the ordinariness of evil and the premise that you cannot judge a person purely on their physical appearance. He is also crucial to plot of the novel as he determines Francis' motivations. Larry LaSalle is also what fuels the main questions that arise in the novel such as what is a hero? LaSalle is also used to show heroism. For example one could argue that by killing himself it was a last act of heroism on Francis' part as it means he will not have to go through all the guilt. He also has LaSalle ask the question of whether his heroic acts are devalued by his crimes. LaSalle does not feel any guilt over his actions; this limits our empathy with him. One of the other main themes that links into LaSalle is growing up but in Larry's case he is already mature when he enters the novel. Although in terms of rights of passage he goes from having a lot of respect in Francis's eyes to having very little. Francis's hands were 'shaking' when he tried to pull the trigger and end Larry's life which signifies a shred of respect for Larry was still left. War is also a main theme in the novel and Larry, Arthur and Francis are used by Cormier to show the after affects of war. Through Larry this becomes apparent in his last scene when Francis describes him as 'caught in an old photograph that had faded and yellowed with age' or in simpler terms a shadow of his former self, affected negatively by war. Although he is described as 'fragile' at this point from the readers perspective it still limits our empathy with him due to his previous actions. One could argue that karma has turned around to bite Larry LaSalle and he has gotten what he deserves.From chapter one Cormier makes it clear that LaSalle is going to be a very vital character, as Francis tells us 'he is the man I am going to kill'. At the start of the novel there are some questions about this intention as...
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