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A Painted House analysis of luke

            In John Grisham's 1999 novel A Painted House, the author sets the story in rural Arkansas on a cotton farm in Black Oak. The year is 1952 and times are tough for farmers and the nation with the war in Korea. Luke, the narrator of the story, lives with his mom and dad; who live with their parent's gran and pappy. The Chandler's have not made much money in the past, and this year would be no different. In today's day in age, Luke can be compared to a middle aged working man; but as a seven year old, he is happy to live and work on a farm without realizing the hardships of everyday life. .
             Everyday on the farm Luke had a large responsibility to work hard and help out everyone. For instance, each morning Luke would awake before sunrise and gather eggs from the chicken coop for breakfast. Another chore Luke was responsible for is to help his mother pull weeds and pick vegetables in the garden. Before the Mexican farm hands came to pick cotton, Luke was told to clean the loft of the barn where the Mexicans would stay for the next six weeks. During the fall harvest, Luke was expected to pick cotton. He had to wake up early. After doing his chores, he went to the fields to pick cotton for long hours with little rest. Since they lived in Arkansas, the weather contributed to early exhaustion being exposed to the heat for long periods of time. .
             Luke saw much more than the average seven year old. The crimes and violence for example, lead to this assumption. One Saturday while the Chandler's were in town, Luke sneaked behind the co-op. He saw Hank Spruill, a traveling farmhand, get into a brawl with three trouble making brothers named the Sisco's. Hank ended up beating one of them to death with a wood stick. On another occasion, a Saturday the Chandlers did not travel to town, they played a pick-up baseball game between the Mexicans and the other farmhands. A fight was started and ended with Hank and Cowboy (a Mexican) having a grudge against each other.

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