Wally Lamb's She's Come Undone Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Undone" by Wally Lamb. Specifically, it will contain a summary of every character in the book. The characters in "She's Come Undone" are memorable, and each one of them has their own quirks that keep them in the reader's mind long after the book is finished.

Dolores Price -- Dolores is the main character in the novel, and so, she is the character most detailed and most understood by the reader. The novel follows Dolores' life from the age of 13, to around the age of 40, so her character is also the one that develops the most during the novel, and the one who grows and changes most dramatically. Dolores has conquered her daemons, and her psychological prognosis is good. By the end of the book, she has turned her life around, and she has successfully made herself a "new woman," and even though she cannot have a baby, it is clear her prognosis is good, and she will not revert back to her old, destructive ways. Despite her problems, there is something about Dolores that is extremely likable. The reader wants her to succeed, because her life has been such a mess. Dolores grows up as she takes care of Roberta and Mr. Pucci, and in loving them, she finally gives herself permission to let go of her past, and love Thayer, which makes her whole, complete, and happy. Not because she has a man, but because she has herself.

Dolores' Mother -- Dolores' mother is mentally ill, and goes to a mental institution, leaving her daughter to live with Grandma Holland. Before she "deserts" Dolores, just like her father has done, she enables Dolores' weight gain by providing her with her favorite foods, like Mallomars, that she stuffs herself with while she watches television. Her mother is never the same after she loses the baby, and as the years go on, and Tony leaves, she gradually loses her grip on reality. She pushes Dolores away as she grows older, and she is emotionally needy, like a child herself. She does not understand how she drove her husband away, and she deserts her daughter just as effectively by having a nervous breakdown and then dying. She loves her daughter, and wants what is best for her, but does not quite know how to accomplish it. She changes during the book, and learns she can take care of herself, and that she does not need a man, but she is not emotionally fulfilled.

Dolores' Father -- Dolores' Father, Tony, is a hero to Dolores, and it is quite difficult on her when he leaves the family. He is a prejudiced and selfish man who prides himself on his muscular body, and calls people things like "Jewboy." He is domineering and cruel, but he also has a heart, and loves Dolores and her dead baby brother, even though he leaves.

Grandma Holland -- Dolores goes to live with her grandmother when her mother has her nervous breakdown. Grandma Holland is religious, a busybody, and holds herself above her neighbors because of her religion. She is old-fashioned, rigid, and cold, and cannot even hug her own granddaughter. She is emotionally repressed, and because of this, she has passed her lack of emotion and her rigidity down through the family, because her daughter and her granddaughter do not know how to deal with their emotions, either. Grandma changes by the end of the book, she even cries, because she, just like Dolores, has lost everyone around her, and she can finally admit she loves Dolores.

Mr. Pucci -- Mr. Pucci is Dolores high school guidance counselor, and he helps her in many small ways. Mostly, he helps her through school. He is a father figure to her, and she relies on him for everyday problems. He is a secondary character, and becomes more real to Delores when she discovers he is gay. He does not grow during the book, but he endures, and he is always there for Dolores, no matter when or where. He is her one true, enduring friend in the book.

Jack Speight -- Jack Speight is the upstairs neighbor who rapes Dolores when she is only thirteen. He is young, exotic, and all the women of the house have a crush on him. He is unhappy and unfulfilled, and he uses Dolores to make himself feel…

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