In this part of the tutorial about the types of narrators, I’ll analyze the first-person narrator which is the one widely used in contemporary literature. What distinguishes him from the witness narrator, who also resorts to the first person, is the fact that this narrator is the protagonist talking about himself (or herself) and his circumstances. There are quite a lot of first-person novels. Paul Auster’s Moon Palace and Oracle Night, J. D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, or Philippe Claudel’s Brodeck’s Report are well-known examples.
In addition, the first-person narrator is often used in crime fiction. This is the case of in the novels written by Jeff Lindsay about the serial killer Dexter. Nevertheless, we can also find this type of narrator in the epistolary genre, personal diaries, biographies, internal monologues, etc. Regardless of the literary genre, here are some general features that can help us determine if the first-person narrator fits our story: