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Something that struck me about this story was how well-done the dialogue was, which is very essential since this story was mostly dialogue. From the very beginning of the story it’s clear that this is going to be mostly dialogue, the narrator says that his friend Mel is talking in the very first sentence. When the main action and conflict of a story comes purely through the dialogue of some people sitting around a table, drinking gin, the dialogue really needs to be right. In this case, it was. It felt very real, it read like someone was actually speaking, instead of feeling forced or fake. The different characters also had different traits within their pieces of dialogue, much like people do in real life.

Throughout the story there is movement to the conversation, which is an accurate depiction of real life conversations. One character will address the group, then will address their spouse, and then another member of the group. This happens on nearly every page, with interjections between the actual spoken dialogue telling the reader who is being addressed. In real conversations this is very much what happens. In the story, this is represented to the reader without being overwhelming.

The actual words of the dialogue also read like someone truly speaking. Sometimes dialogue comes off as speech-like, or too informative, too stiff or awkward, and that detracts from the characters and the story, especially in a story like this, where dialogue really makes up the story. But these characters say things like “oh” and “I mean,” things that people actually put into their conversations. In Mel’s speech on 140-141 he sounds like a real person talking. He says “Oh, I’m serious” which sounds very real, he asks rhetorical questions, which he then answers himself, he varies his sentence length. He uses common phrases that people put into their stories like “I mean, the man was crazy” and “little things like that” and “I’m telling you.” Little details like that make the dialogue seem real which then makes the characters seem real. The characters also sometimes go on tangents in the middle of dialogue or add details that don’t necessarily pertain to the most important aspect of what they are saying, like it just popped into their heads mid-sentence. This is all very realistic of what real people sound like when they are talking and it is very well-done throughout the story.

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