Splicing scenes from Tristan Sadler's visits to Norwich, England (1919) with flashbacks of his training days in Aldershot, England and his struggles in the trenches of World War I France (1916), then forwarding to an evening in his life as an 81-year-old author in London (1979), John Boyne's The Absolutist
examines one man's lifetime of unresolved guilt. These feelings partly stem from spurned homosexual love in a time when such partnerships were considered crimes.
Sadler is the anti-hero who cannot forgive himself for his role in the death of Will Bancroft, the titular absolutist who begins as a fellow recruit and later renounces fighting after witnessing the killing of a prisoner-of-war. Also a friend and sexual partner who refuses to consider their encounters as more than aberrations, Bancroft emerges as a flawed yet mythologized man - all of which creates a...
Beyond the Book
In John Boyne's The Absolutist
, twenty-one-year-old Tristan Sadler takes a train from London to Norwich, England to deliver a package of letters to Will Bancroft's sister. Norwich, a city located along the River Wensum in eastern England, is the county seat of Norfolk and was once one of the largest, most populated towns in England, second only to London in prosperity.
Norfolk (literally meaning North people), shares the bulge on the east of England, known as East Anglia with it's southern neighbor - Suffolk (South people). The region is known as East Anglia after the...