Characters

The main characters of the short story “Reunion” by John Cheever are Charlie and his father. Charlie is a young man whose age is not disclosed, but who is most likely underage. As he is traveling from his grandmother’s to a cottage that his mother rented, he has a few hours to spend with his father until his next train arrives. 

Charlie’s father is most likely an alcoholic who is more concerned with showing off his high social status than with spending quality time with his son. 

You can read a detailed characterization of Charlie and Charlie’s father on the following pages. 

Extract 

Here, you can read an extract from our study guide: 

Charlie misses his father and is happy to be around him. He smells him like his mother smells roses (p. 1, ll. 15-16) and expresses his wish to have evidence of their meeting: “I hoped that someone would see us together. I wished that we could be photographed. I wanted some record of our having been together” (p. 1, ll. 17-19). Charlie’s wish to be photographed alongside his father suggests that he probably does not have memories of him. 

Throughout their meeting, Charlie is silent, except for a brief exchange when his father “cross-questioned [him] about the baseball season” (p. 1, l. 39). Charlie...

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