The Lime By Neil Gaiman

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Blurred Limes

The lime featured in chapters eleven, twelve, and thirteen of Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman seems so misplaced it brings into speculation why it was in the book at all. The lime is first brought into the plot through Fat Charlie’s taxi driver who wants to prove to Charlie that limes really do grow on the island. The lime becomes the only luggage Charlie has with him and when Charlie goes out to look for Mrs. Higgler, several strangers ask if he is “the one with the lime,” some even proceed to ask if he would show it to them. When Charlie returns to the hotel, the lime is there waiting for him where he left it. He decides to take the lime with him the next time he goes out, which happens to be that night. He runs into Daisy in the hotel’s restaurant, and with the lime in his pocket, successfully grabs the attention of everyone in the room which in turn diverts the murderous Grahame Coats’ course of action. Later on, during a trip to a magical other-world, Charlie asks Dragon if he’s afraid of limes. The short conversation gets him out of trouble. By then Charlie doesn’t have the lime with him anymore, but what he does have is the green fedora his father gives him earlier on in that trip to the magical other-world. Both the lime and the fedora are green, but the lime more likely symbolizes Charlie’s own development of his father’s characteristics, compared to the fedora, which Charlie is able to wear proudly, showing how unashamed he has become of his father since

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