Bridge to Terabithia
by Katherine Paterson
Analysis: Narrator Point of View
Who is the narrator, can she or he read minds, and, more importantly, can we trust her or him?
Third Person (Limited Omniscient)
Paterson's use of third person (limited omniscient) point of view means we see the events and the circumstances as Jess would see them, like we're peeking over his shoulder. We usually know how he feels, even though the book's not written in first person. Most importantly, we get to see Leslie as Jess sees her. It's not that he views her with eyes so biased that we don't get a clear picture of her – it's that we never see Terabithia or Jess directly through Leslie's eyes too. We know how she felt about both of them, but that information is always filtered through someone else's perspective, like Jess's, or her father's. Because we never hear the story from Leslie's point of view, when she dies, we don't have any way to process that information except to feel along with Jess and be sad along with him.