Literary Analysis Paper Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 30 March 2017

Literary Analysis Paper

Retrieved Reformation is a short story about a man named Jimmy Valentine. In the beginning of the story, he is being released from prison for his crimes of robbing banks and cracking into safes. After being released, he realizes that he wants to live a life of no crime. He becomes a dynamic character because he begins to dramatically change after meeting the love of his life, Annabel Adams. He wanted to begin a new life.

In “A Retrieved Reformation”, a selfish and unethical criminal named Jimmy Valentine is known from breaking into safes and robbing banks. In the first couple of pages of the story, we come to find that Jimmy was doing prison time because of the crimes that he would commit. On page 2 it states, “He had served ten months of a four- year sentence.” (pg 2)

The reason that he only had to spend ten months was because the friends that he had were friends of the government so they told the judge to shorten the amount of prison time that Jimmy had to do. In this part of the story he is being released by a guard and he gives him some advice to stay out of trouble. “You’ll go out in the morning. Brace up, and make a man of yourself. You’re not a bad fellow at heart. Stop cracking safes, and live straight.” (pg 3) This advice would soon help Jimmy realize that he has to get his new life together and learn how to keep himself out of things that would get him in trouble with the law.

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As soon as Jimmy Valentine was released from prison, the reader is shown many examples on how Jimmy Valentine is a dynamic character and how much he has changed throughout his life. The first example is as soon as Jimmy Valentine got released from jail, he started robbing banks again. One day, he was walking around Elmore, the new town that he lived in, and stopped in amazement of a woman whom he had never met before. Her name was Annabel Adams. Her father had owned the bank.

He went to a nearby hotel and registered his name as Ralph D. Spencer and got a room. Jimmy came to Elmore in search of a location to go into business. He was talking to the clerk at the desk about shoe-store openings in the town. He opened a shoe store to keep his mind busy instead of robbing banks. On page 7 the author states, “He opened a shoe-store and secured a good run of trade.” Also, Jimmy Valentine legally got his name changed to Mr. Ralph Spencer because he wanted to start a brand new life and wanted to leave his bad memories and crimes behind him.

Finally, in this time in this time in the story, Jimmy Valentine has completed changed his life around by becoming engaged and opening a business. Now all he has to do is sell his tools away to his friend because he doesn’t need them anymore. On page 8, the author states “I wouldn’t touch a dollar of another mans money now for a million.” This shows that he is serious about not going back to his old way of life and wants to stay out of troubles way. He wants his friend to meet him at a place named Sully’s so that he can give him the kit of tools. Also, on page it, it says “I wouldn’t do another crooked thing for the whole world.”

Jimmy Valentine is trying very hard to keep his new life successful and crime-free. One day, Annabel and Jimmy go to the bank that Annabel’s father, Mr. Adams owned. Suddenly, they heard a scream of a woman. They ran to where they heard it from. A nine-year old girl named May had shut Agatha in the vault. Mr. Adams tried to open the door. He said that it could not be opened because May had turned the knob on the door.

Jimmy told everybody to be quiet. He yelled into the vault to try to see if Agatha could respond to him. Her mother thought that she would die in the vault of fright. Jimmy had done something that had surprised everyone. He opened his suitcase full of the tools that he was going to give away to his friend. He used those tools to crack into the vault like he had in his old life. He used a drill to open into the vault. Agatha was safe and collapsed into her mothers arms.

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  • University/College: University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 30 March 2017

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