The main characters in the novel are Santiago (the old man), Manolin (the boy), and the marlin. Santiago is a humble Cuban fisherman who has had a streak of bad luck for eighty-four days. Although he grows old, his pride does not stop him from trying to prove himself during a three-day effort to catch a large marlin. For Santiago, it does not matter how many times a man is tested and proves himself, so long as he is willing to do it again. Although Santiago ultimately loses the fish, the marlin is also his greatest victory. Santiago hooks the marlin on the first afternoon of his fishing expedition. As man and beast struggle in a worthy fight, a bond is formed between them. One cannot When the captured marlin is later destroyed by sharks, Santiago feels destroyed as well. Like Santiago, the marlin is implicitly compared to Christ. A boy presumably in his adolescence, Manolin is Santiago's apprentice and devoted attendant. The old man first took him out on a boat when he was merely five years old. Due to Santiago's recent bad luck, Manolin's parents have forced the boy to go out on a different fishing boat. Manolin, however, still cares deeply for the old man, to whom he continues to look as a mentor. His love for Santiago is unmistakable as the two discuss baseball and as the young boy recruits help from villagers to improve the old man's impoverished conditions.
Setting: Context clues lead the reader to believe that the setting of the novel is most likely near Key West or Cuba, given the references to the Gulf Stream (pg. 9) Also, there are references to Havana, a port city on the northern coast of Cuba. (Pg. 11) As he drifts on the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, Santiago also refers to Havana as The location of the story is also a small village Also, given that the novella was published in 1951, it is assumed that story took place around the late 1940s, given how