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In Stephanie Vaughn’s “Able, Baker, Charlie, Dog” the voice of Gemma is truly captivating and honest. Vaughn has a way of describing an image without using useless descriptive language.  She gets to the point while still enabling me to visualize Gemma’s every action.  I love the way she describes her Father and the different things he says to her while giving her life lessons.  Not every memory is a big event from her childhood but they mean something to Gemma and are important to her.

Gemma’s father would tell her different stories about the river and how men died there and went crazy.  It caused Gemma to think about death a lot.  She even thought she had breast cancer and was going to die because of a pamphlet she found.  I believe her father would discuss death so much to prepare Gemma for it and to let her know that bad things do happen.

I failed to see a true connection between Gemma and her parents.  She loved them but it didn’t seem like she could talk to them about things.  It took her awhile before she finally told her mother about the changes in her body and how she thought she had breast cancer.  She had a difficult time writing to her father when he was away in the Army and didn’t know what to say to him. When he left that night and walked across the ice, Gemma couldn’t tell him to stay. Even though Gemma’s father didn’t die that night on the ice, she lost  a part of him there.  There relationship was never the same after that and he wasn’t the same father she had once known.  She regrets not stopping him that day he left on the ice and knows things could have been different if she had.


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