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I Am the Cheese
I Am the Cheese
by Robert Cormier

I Am the Cheese Analysis

Literary Devices in I Am the Cheese

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

Setting

The Road from Massachusetts to VermontThe bike ride Adam takes through New England is the most vivid setting in the book. It's October, and it's cold, which Adam never fails to remind us of. Althou...

Narrator Point of View

In the introduction to a 1997 edition of I Am the Cheese, Cormier admits that the book "began as [...] an experiment with first person – present tense [...] simply because I had nothing else to c...

Genre

I Am the Cheese doesn't fit snugly into one genre category. It's certainly young adult literature, because it's meant specifically for teens, but its themes and plot are incredibly mature and compl...

Tone

Reading I Am the Cheese, we can tell that the narrators are just as unsettled as we are. It's hard to put our finger on why everything feels so strange, but it's all made clearer when we look at th...

Writing Style

Those are all pretty scary words, so let's take a look one by one:StaccatoA staccato style is short or disjointed (you'll know exactly what we're talking about if you're a musician). The author of...

What's Up With the Title?

If you were like us, when you first read the title you thought it had something to do with the main character being a "big cheese" or something like that. But it becomes obvious pretty quickly that...

What's Up With the Ending?

Because there are two narratives in this book, there are two endings. We'll talk about both of them and how they relate to each other. The first ending is what Shmoop would call an informational on...

Tough-o-Meter

In I Am the Cheese, Robert Cormier challenges us with a handful of big words: claustrophobic (1.4), camaraderie (8.22), raucous (18.15). Oh, and Massachusetts (1.1). But a quick glance at the dicti...

Plot Analysis

Story Line 1: Biking through New England on a crisp October daySounds more pleasant than it actually is. Adam is biking from Massachusetts to Vermont to visit his dad at the hospital. We don't real...

Trivia

The phone number Adam dials to try to reach Amy was actually Robert Cormier's phone number in real life. A lot of fans and curious young readers called him, but he never once received a prank call...

Allusions

Thomas Wolfe (1.2, 10.7, 30.9)Thomas Wolfe, The Web and the Rock (1.2) Ernest Hemingway (8.9)F. Scott Fitzgerald (8.9)Tom Wolfe (not to be confused with Thomas Wolfe) (10.7)"The Invisible Man" (by...

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