Anita and Me

by

Meera Syal

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After breaking her leg, Meena meets Robert at the hospital, where he is confined to an isolation room and separated from Meena by a window. Robert is a boy who suffers from an unnamed, severe disease from which he ultimately dies. Robert is kind and funny, and he and Meena immediately become close friends. They share written notes across the window and invent a secret language so that people cannot understand them. When Meena goes to visit him in the isolation room, it becomes obvious that they have feelings for each other, and Robert calls Meena his girlfriend. Meena remains deeply affected by Robert’s death, as she realizes that she has never felt such intense sadness before.
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Robert Character Timeline in Anita and Me

The timeline below shows where the character Robert appears in Anita and Me. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 12
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
Culture and Belonging Theme Icon
...the hospital, Meena lies in between a girl called Angela and a vey sick boy, Robert, who is in an isolation room. The doctor tells her she will be out by... (full context)
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
Culture and Belonging Theme Icon
Truth vs. Lies Theme Icon
Meena finds her roommate Angela boring and begins to converse with Robert, who writes notes to her from the other side of the glass. Meena is flattered... (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
When Meena finally has paper and a pen, Robert and she begin playing games and exchanging pieces of information. Meena has always dreamed of... (full context)
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
Culture and Belonging Theme Icon
...experiencing the full force of that emotion. That night, she does not exchange messages with Robert, but she knows that he is watching her. (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
One day, when nurses bring a plastic Christmas tree into the room, Meena notices that Robert’s bed is empty. She desperately asks a nurse what has happened, and she explains that... (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
Culture and Belonging Theme Icon
...gets ready to leave the hospital. Nurse Sylvie, who knows how much Meena cares about Robert, explains that she has almost gotten herself into trouble for what she is about to... (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
...they both agree to tell each other something the other doesn’t know and Meena tells Robert that she is getting a bike. She then asks Robert when he is going to... (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
When Meena goes to the hospital for physiotherapy, she is told that Robert is having some more tests and cannot see him. She leaves him a lighthearted note... (full context)
Chapter 13
Friendship Theme Icon
...in mid-January, a sad experience since she is still overwhelmed by the grief of losing Robert. Although she is told she cannot do much exercise, Meena begins spending time on her... (full context)
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
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...house on the market. However, only Meena’s father understands that Meena has been affected by Robert’s death, as her mother does not believe that Meena is old enough to worry about... (full context)
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
Culture and Belonging Theme Icon
Truth vs. Lies Theme Icon
...desirous to rebel. Now, though, after having strong emotional experiences such as losing Nanima and Robert, Meena is able to see things with greater perspective and concludes that she is not... (full context)
Family Discipline and Guidance Theme Icon
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...about her dad, but Tracey simply says that he is killing her. Meena believes that Roberto must be beating Anita and concludes that this would explain a lot about Anita’s behavior. (full context)
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...follows an insistent Tracey, she wonders what she could possibly do to stand up to Roberto, and remains obsessed by the fact that she has an exam the next day. (full context)
Friendship Theme Icon
Truth vs. Lies Theme Icon
When Meena remembers that the pain she felt for Nanima and Robert was much more intense than any emotion Sam or Anita made her feel, she gives... (full context)