Digging pits. Spending the night in haunted houses. Feeding witches. Tom's pretty lonely doing his duty in Revenge of the Witch. He's got a job like that of a soldier, but he's a real "Army of One." Unlike military men in our world, who all live together, work together, and fight together, Tom only has The Spook. And the Spook is more a mentor figure than a friend. Poor Tom. His particularly creepy job often scares people away. And besides that, just being 100% dedicated to doing your duty, whether you want to or not, can be pretty isolating.
Questions About Isolation
- Is the Spook lonely? Why or why not, do you think?
- Why is Tom's job as the Spook's apprentice isolating?
- When does Tom feel the most alone? When does he feel closest to others?
- Do you think Alice ever feels alone? Why or why not?
Chew on This
When Tom works hard, he doesn't realize that he's lonely; once he stops working, the realization hits him, and his loneliness is more difficult to bear than ever.
Tom is told that if he's comfortable with himself, and with his gift, he won't be lonely. When he leaves Alice at the end of the book, he's lonely again. So either he's not comfortable with himself yet, or this advice is a load of hooey.