Emotional Strength and Child-like Naivety Triumphs in the Clutch.
Anybody who has spent time in Maine knows that there are many pleasant areas to go for a walk through the woods. A hike in Maine is an experience that no description can do justice. For the nature lover this experience holds endless new rewards, but given the right circumstances the wilderness can be a dark and dangerous place. A person not familiar with the wild is left at its mercy. Survival is expected in civilized society, but in the woods it is survival by chance and survival of the fittest reigns supreme. In Stephen King's, The Girl who Loved Tom Gordon, a nine-year-old girl is put to the ultimate test of survival when she strays from the path and is forced to endure her worst fears by any means necessary. Trisha McFarland is separated from her mother and brother on a weekend hike in Maine. During this time her natural instincts take over and she changes from a peacemaking young girl into an animal whose only meaning of existence is to get out alive, and the only thing that keeps her alive is her imagination coupled with her love of her idol, Red Sox relief pitcher Tom Gordon.
This is a story of subtle horror and of the fear that hides in the shadows of everyone's worst nightmare. Being cut off from friends, family and pre-packaged nourishment is something that most adults would lose their sanity over. Therefore; a girl lost and being stalked in the woods should stand no chance of defeating the odds. The conflict in this story is based mainly on ideas. It is a fear of the unknown, and a dread of what lies ahead that makes the terror seem so genuinely terrifying. The nine-year-old Trisha McFarland is the main character and her vulnerability is the driving force behind the tale. She changes rapidly and often throughout the narrative which is evident through the way her thought process changes as the likeliness of her survival decreases with every step through the vast forest.