The Sun is Also a Star

The Sun is Also a Star

by

Nicola Yoon

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The Sun is Also a Star: Chapter 36 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
When Natasha asks Daniel again about his suit, he explains again that he has an interview with a Yale alumnus. He says he's not nervous because he doesn't really care. When Natasha asks if his parents are making him apply, he explains that his parents are first-generation Korean immigrants, which means that it doesn't matter what he wants in life.
When Daniel mentions that his parents believe the way they do because they're immigrants, it suggests that immigrants must in some ways try harder or do things differently in order to make it in the US
Themes
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
When Daniel admits that he doesn't know what he wants, Natasha seems to shut down. Daniel asks her what she wants to be. She replies that she wants to be a data scientist, which means she'll analyze data and interpret the results. Daniel asks if she's always wanted that job, Natasha insists that her life isn't destiny; the job suits her personality. She insists she's not passionate about it and doesn't need to be.
Once again, Natasha rejects passion and destiny even though she’s clearly passionate about math and science and believes in cause-and-effect relationships.
Themes
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha seems confused when Daniel insists that life is really long to do something that she's not passionate about, and she counters by insisting that life is longer when one's dreams will never come true. She states that only a tiny fraction of creative people are successful. Daniel declares that Natasha sounds like Dae Hyun, but Natasha suggests that he's just looking out for him. Daniel wonders if Natasha realizes how passionate she is about not being passionate.
Again, the fact that Natasha is aware of the success rates of creative and artistic people suggests she has some personal stake in knowing about them, and she may have good reason for believing creative pursuits aren't worth her time. However, her belief is absolutely rooted in fear of being financially unstable.
Themes
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha asks if he's serious about being a poet. Daniel mockingly says he'd never consider such a thing, and then says that it's ridiculous to think that they know what they want at age seventeen. He wishes he could live multiple lives at once and insists that his current track goes on forever, all the way through med school, marriage, children, and death.
Daniel espouses a way of living that allows teens to experiment and actually be passionate, which the reader will later learn is a product of his financially stable upbringing.
Themes
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
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Daniel declares that humans are capable of doing so much and dreaming so big, there's no reason to settle. Daniel and Natasha look into each other's eyes, and Daniel sees something in hers. It seems like Natasha is going to take his hand, and he has the sense that they're meant to be, but Natasha walks away.
The sense of déjà vu that Daniel feels again suggests that destiny is real within the world of the novel. However, Natasha's ability to walk away shows that there is absolutely human choice involved in how things unfold.
Themes
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon