I like the ambiguous ending. The first time I read it, I thought he died. The second time, I thought he survived. It's funny what a person brings to a book, isn't it? I think I'm more optimistic these days.Does Garraty die at the end of "the long walk"? Your opinion please!
I'd like to think he survived, though it may well be ambiguous as well. I found myself rooting for him the whole way.
An interesting interpretation. The novel reminded me a lot of Catch-22 which also had a (somewhat) ambiguous ending, so that seems appropriate.I like the ambiguous ending. The first time I read it, I thought he died. The second time, I thought he survived. It's funny what a person brings to a book, isn't it? I think I'm more optimistic these days.
What do you think? Welcome.
Yes, I agree with everyone that in a scenario where Garraty lives, I think he wouldn't have all his mental faculties and it definitely would take a toll on him physically.Welcome!!!
Personally, I am casting my vote in support of Garraty making it physically, but not mentally. There's the quote in the final section of the novel during the brilliant scene where Garraty's losing it (jazz playing in his head, dissociating from Jan and his mother as humans) that seems to verify this: "Even if he won, if he managed to outlast McVries and Stebbins and Baker, it was over. He was never going home again" (380). Although, I think there might be another layer here in that even if Garraty did live and win, he probably doesn't have a long life ahead of him. From the information revealed throughout the book, it seems the winners end up dying from the horrific toll the Walk takes on their bodies (I remember reading about a guy wearing down his feet and another dropping dead at the end from an aneurysm).
Oh, that's another interesting interpretation! I have a few sections in the book highlighted where the characters seem to age prematurely, too (which fits with what you're saying).I just realized that TLW could be an allegory to aging. At the end of your life your left with nothing- your body is destroyed and your mind is just gone.