Important Quotes and Analysis

The following quotations are important at various points in the story:
1.) “ ‘What’s gonna happen to them? Once you start bulldozing I mean.” Curly the foreman chuckled. ‘What owls?’ he said.”
(pg. 8) This quote begins the confrontation between what’s right and what authority claims is right.

2.) “Next time you’ve got a problem just tell me, and then we’ll sit down and talk about it like civilized human beings.”
(pg. 45) This is Roy’s comment to Dana when he tries to reason with boy to stop the bullying.

3.) “ Roy ran all the way back to his bicycle and rode home as fast as he could. He wasn’t frightened and he wasn’t discouraged. He was more excited than ever.”
(pg. 57) This is Roy’s reaction to his first encounter to the running boy.

4.) “He wasn’t cocky, but he had a stubborn streak of pride.”
(pg. 65) Here Roy recognizes that this character trait will not allow him to spend the rest of the school year cowering in fear of Dana Matherson.

5.) “He was determined to persuade Mullet Fingers that he was someone to be trusted, that he hadn’t come to interfere but rather to help, if Mullet Fingers needed it.”
(pg. 67) This shows that inside Roy is a good boy who has compassion for the needs of others.

6.) “ ‘Eberhardt, why do you care about this kid?’ It was a good question, and Roy wasn’t certain he could put the answer into words. there was something about the look on the boy’s face . . . something urgent and determined and unforgettable.”
(pgs. 74-75) These words show Roy’s inner strength and goodness.)

7.) “It was remarkable that the same species of bird was able to thrive in two places so far apart, and so completely different. If they can do it, Roy thought, maybe I can, too.”
(pg. 93) This shows Roy’s progression into the understanding of life as change and adaption.

8.) “He refrained from doing some of the wild, daredevil stunts that boys his age tried – not because he feared for his safety, but because he felt it was solemn duty as an only child.”
(pg. 101) This shows Roy’s respect for his parents and his knowledge of their love for him.

9.) “There, standing by the hole and peering curiously at one of the meatballs, was the smallest owl he had ever seen. Mullet Fingers chucked him gently on the shoulder. ‘Okay – now do you get it?’ “
(pg. 124) Roy finally learns why Mullet Fingers is willing to go after a large corporation.”

10.) “The kid was only trying to take care of some owls – how could that possibly be a crime? Roy thought.”
(pg. 128) This shows how Roy is beginning to sense the corruption inherent in the building of the restaurant.

11.) “Sometimes you’re going to be faced with situations where the line isn’t clear between what’s right and what’s wrong. Your heart will tell you to do something different. In the end, all that’s left is to look at both sides and go with your best judgment.”
(pg. 160) This commentary from Roy’s mother expresses what he has already come to believe.

12.) “As Roy rode away on his bike, he pondered the possibility that Mullet Fingers was better off roaming the woods than living at home with a witch for a mother.”
(pg. 166) Roy has come to realize that being a biological parent doesn’t necessarily make you good for your child.

13.) “Just because something is legal doesn’t automatically make it right.”
(pg. 180) Roy recognizes that the world is filled with injustice and we must all make choices that my not always have the best consequences.

14.) “ ‘You can’t stop him, Roy. He’s too darn thickheaded.’ ‘Then I guess we’ve gotta join him.’ “
(pg. 210) Here Roy has made his decision to stand up for the owls – to do the right thing.

15.) “He wouldn’t stop until he reached the crest of his imaginary Montana mountain and coasted downhill into the coolness of the valley.”
(pg. 228) These words show how delighted Roy is to have taken the adult steps to stand up for what is right

16.) “Now he understood what was going to happen to the little owls if he did his job properly, and it weighted him with an aching and unshakeable sorrow.”
(pg. 234) Officer Delinko is coming to realize that what he is doing may be legal, but it is still wrong.

17.) “The classroom fell quiet, a long heavy silence that roared in Roy’s ears like a train.”
(pg. 248) This occurs after Roy tells about the plight of the owls in current events. he knows he’s awakened the consciences of all these kids as well as his teacher.

18.) “ ‘You bury those birds,“ Mullet Fingers said, “you gotta bury me, too.’ “
(pg. 267) Mullet Fingers puts himself in danger for the owls.

19.) “Guess I’ll have to come back another day and try again, Roy thought. That’s what a real Florida boy would do.”
(pg. 292) The novel ends with this thought showing that Roy finally has adapted to the change in his life; he has grown up.


Another literary device used by the author is a motif. This device allows the author to run an important idea throughout the story by using images to create the thought for the reader. There is one motif used in Hoot:
1.) Bildungsroman which is a motif whereby a young boy grows, matures, and comes of age. The reader sees this in the following ways: Roy searches for the reason why a boy his age would be barefoot, living in the woods, and not going to school; he has to find a way to deal with a bully that is mature and effective; he must make choices that could have serious repercussions; he had to recognize that he owes his parents respect, because they have earned it; and he must accept that life is all about change and how we adapt to it.

Cite this page:

Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on Hoot". . 09 May 2017