The Sense of an Ending

by

Julian Barnes

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Adrian’s son (Adrian) Character Analysis

A forty-something man around the time Tony begins telling his story, this Adrian doesn’t have his identity revealed until the very end of the novel. He is mentally ill and needs to be under constant care. Eventually Tony realizes that the man is Adrian’s son, but it takes much more time to realize that he is not Adrian’s son with Veronica, but rather with Veronica’s mother (Sarah Ford).
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Adrian’s son (Adrian) Character Timeline in The Sense of an Ending

The timeline below shows where the character Adrian’s son (Adrian) appears in The Sense of an Ending. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Two
Memory, Manipulation, and Self-Deception Theme Icon
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
Responsibility, Agency, and Guilt Theme Icon
Sex, Class, and Power Theme Icon
...color, and expression, “corroborated” by his height and bone structure. This had to be Adrian’s son. Tony’s first reaction is to think about what he wrote in his letter to Veronica... (full context)
Memory, Manipulation, and Self-Deception Theme Icon
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
Responsibility, Agency, and Guilt Theme Icon
Sex, Class, and Power Theme Icon
...gotten pregnant, and perhaps the trauma of Adrian’s suicide had affected her unborn child. Her son can’t function independently and needs constant support. Tony wonders when the diagnosis had been made,... (full context)
Memory, Manipulation, and Self-Deception Theme Icon
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
Responsibility, Agency, and Guilt Theme Icon
Sex, Class, and Power Theme Icon
Philosophy vs. Reality Theme Icon
...reevaluate the way he always saw Adrian: in fact, he was just another version of Robson. For the first time, Tony realizes he and his friends never thought about Robson’s girlfriend... (full context)
Memory, Manipulation, and Self-Deception Theme Icon
Responsibility, Agency, and Guilt Theme Icon
...respond or to think better of him, but he ends by wishing her and her son the best. He’s not sure if he feels better or worse after sending it. He... (full context)
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
...them. The care worker goes over to Tony and, introducing himself as Terry, says that “Adrian” (Jr.) is upset by Tony’s presence. Tony apologizes, saying he doesn’t want to upset anyone ever... (full context)
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
...Tony minds him asking who he is: Tony replies that he was a friend of Adrian (Jr.) ’s father many years ago, and used to know Adrian’s mother Veronica quite well too:... (full context)
History, Narrative, and Truth Theme Icon
Responsibility, Agency, and Guilt Theme Icon
...much more satisfying than these fatter ones. He offers Terry his hand and says that Adrian (Jr.) seems to get very good care. Terry stands up and says they try, though budget... (full context)