Karen Russel’s “The Star-Gazer’s Log of Summer-Time Crime” accounts the story of a boy named Ollie as he attempts to fit in with a boy that leads the group to commit “Summer-time crimes”. Russel is successful in creating a memorable story through symbolism, unique characters, and a poignant ending.
The main protagonist is conflicted between being true to himself or being what Raffy wants him to be and do. There are several examples of symbolism throughout the story including Ollie’s favorite constellation-the Gemini Twins. When Ollie’s twin sister Molly, realizes he has been hanging around Raffy, Molly proceeds to call him a “faker” and “phony”. She points out how much a friend Raffy is if he does not even know Ollie’s favorite…show more content… He would continue to go down his own path, continued his star-gazing in all of its glorious “un-coolness” had he not allowed Raffy to influence him.
The characters are extremely striking as each is fairly developed. The dialogue in this short story in particular, helps readers understand who the characters are. Raffy had a penchant for the derogatory phrase, “bitch” when it comes to dealing with people he does not like and even his own friends, among other profanities. The level of respect, or rather lack thereof for his friend Marta is very telling as he has no qualms to refer to her in such a crass manner. Also, even if he does have some feelings for his friend Petey, he still forces unkind pranks on him and unkind words. There are even clues for as to why the characters are the way they are. Ollie mentions that he does not know of Raffy’s parents or where he stays. This is very telling as Raffy does not seem to have positive parental guidance. Marta’s mother is noted as being wrapped around the arm of a new guy, drinking at a bar, referring to one of them as a “gentleman caller”. Perhaps, the reason why Marta has feelings for Raffy, despite how poorly he treats and objectify her, is because it’s the way she watches men treat her mother. Ollie himself is in conflict between being a “fake” in order to maintain a semblance of friendship with Raffy or being who he is. Ollie has a father that is very much interested in