The Sun is Also a Star

The Sun is Also a Star

by

Nicola Yoon

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on The Sun is Also a Star can help.
Daniel Bae is one of the novel's seventeen-year-old protagonists. He's a second generation immigrant who very comfortably inhabits a space between being fully American and fully Korean. While he loves Korean food and speaks Korean with his parents, he also craves the life of a “normal” American teenage boy. Though his true love is poetry, he initially plans to attend Yale and become a doctor to appease his parents. Daniel has a good relationship with his mother, Min Soo, and he has mixed feelings about his father, Dae Hyun—his father doesn't support his love of poetry, berates Daniel (when he speaks to him at all), and pushes Daniel to achieve a version of the American dream that hinges solely on financial success. Daniel believes wholeheartedly in love and destiny. He meets Natasha in Manhattan because an evangelical train conductor instructed his passengers to get off the train to go find God, and Daniel decides it's a perfect opportunity to let destiny lead him. Though he's attracted to Natasha, her disdain for love, destiny, and anything she considers unscientific presents problems for Daniel. He makes it his goal to convince her of the existence of love and make her fall in love with him scientifically, using questions from a scientific study on love. Through his daylong relationship with Natasha, Daniel comes to realize that he has no interest in following his father's plans for him and finally admits that the thought of being a doctor makes him feel anxious and trapped. As he becomes more confident that he and Natasha are meant to be, Daniel confronts both his father and his abrasive older brother, Charlie, about their poor treatment of him.

Daniel Bae Quotes in The Sun is Also a Star

The The Sun is Also a Star quotes below are all either spoken by Daniel Bae or refer to Daniel Bae. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Random House edition of The Sun is Also a Star published in 2016.
Chapter 8 Quotes

In the end, she chose both. Korean and American. American and Korean.

So they would know where they were from.

So they would know where they were going.

Page Number: 16
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 34 Quotes

Maybe I should give up. I don't know why I haven't yet. The universe is clearly trying to save me from myself. I bet if I looked for signs about parting ways, I would find them.

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Natasha Kingsley
Page Number: 87
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 37 Quotes

When they say the heart wants what it wants, they're talking about the poetic heart—the heart of love songs and soliloquies, the one that can break as if it were just-formed glass.

They're not talking about the real heart, the one that only needs healthy foods and aerobic exercise.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae
Page Number: 102
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 46 Quotes

America's not really a melting pot. It's more like one of those divided metal plates with separate sections for starch, meat, and veggies.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae, Dae Hyun Bae
Page Number: 128
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 60 Quotes

"Doesn't matter. People always ask where I'm from. I used to say here, but then they ask where are you really from, and then I say Korea. Sometimes I say North Korea and that my parents and I escaped from a water dungeon filled with piranhas where Kim Jong-un was holding us prisoner."

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Natasha Kingsley
Page Number: 157
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 69 Quotes

Of all the ways today could've gone, I couldn't have predicted this. But now I'm sure that everything that's happened today has been leading me to her and us to this moment and this moment to the rest of our lives.

Even Charlie's academic probation from Harvard feels like it's part of the plan to get us to this point.

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Natasha Kingsley, Charlie Bae
Page Number: 175
Explanation and Analysis:

I was so surprised by that. I thought I knew everything about my mom—about both of them, really—but here was this secret history I didn't know about. I asked her why she stopped and she waved her hand in the air like she was wiping the years away.

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Dae Hyun Bae, Min Soo Bae
Page Number: 180
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 80 Quotes

In modern times, the sisters have largely disappeared from the collective consciousness, but the idea of Fate hasn't. Why do we still believe? Does it make tragedy more bearable to believe that we ourselves had no hand in it, that we couldn't have prevented it? It was always ever thus.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley, Daniel Bae
Page Number: 201
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 81-82 Quotes

The sheer number of actions and reactions it's taken to form our solar system, our galaxy, our universe, it's astonishing. The number of things that had to go exactly right is overwhelming.

Compared to that, what is falling in love? A series of small coincidences that we say means everything because we want to believe that our tiny lives matter on a galactic scale.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae
Page Number: 203
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 91 Quotes

I open my mouth to ask for more facts and specifics. I find them reassuring. The poem comes back to me. "'Hope' is the thing with feathers." I close my mouth. For the second time today I'm letting go of the details. Maybe I don't need them. It would be so nice to let someone else take over this burden for a little while.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae, Attorney Jeremy Fitzgerald
Page Number: 233
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 107 Quotes

Before these buildings were buildings, they were just the skeletons of them. Before they were skeletons, they were crossbeams and girders. Metal and glass and concrete. And before that, they were construction plans. Before that, architectural plans. And before that, just an idea someone had for the making of a city.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae
Page Number: 268
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 108 Quotes

"I think all the good parts of us are connected on some level. The part that shares the last double chocolate chip cookie or donates to charity or gives a dollar to a street musician or becomes a candy striper or cries at Apple commercials or says I love you or I forgive you. I think that's God. God is the connection of the very best parts of us."

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Natasha Kingsley
Page Number: 272
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 113 Quotes

"My parents are immigrants. They moved to this country for a better life. They work all the time so my brother and I can have the American Dream. Nowhere in the American Dream does it say you can skip college and become a starving artist."

Page Number: 291
Explanation and Analysis:

"Yes," I say. "He would." But not because he's evil. And not because he's a Stereotypical Korean Parent. But because he can't see past his own history to let us have ours.

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Dae Hyun Bae, Attorney Jeremy Fitzgerald
Page Number: 292
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 120 Quotes

From this distance, the city looks orderly and planned, as if all of it were created at one time for one purpose. When you're inside it, though, it feels like chaos.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley (speaker), Daniel Bae
Page Number: 313
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 122 Quotes

"What I care about is you, and I'm sure that love is enough to overcome all the bullshit. And it is bullshit. All the handwringing. All the talk about cultures clashing or preserving cultures and what will happen to the kids. All of it is one hundred percent pure, unadulterated bullshit, and I just refuse to care."

Related Characters: Daniel Bae (speaker), Natasha Kingsley, Dae Hyun Bae
Page Number: 317
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 129 Quotes

Because everything looks like chaos up close. Daniel thinks it's a matter of scale. If you pull back far enough and wait for long enough, then order emerges.

Maybe their universe is just taking longer to form.

Related Characters: Natasha Kingsley, Daniel Bae
Page Number: 340
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Sun is Also a Star LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Sun is Also a Star PDF

Daniel Bae Character Timeline in The Sun is Also a Star

The timeline below shows where the character Daniel Bae appears in The Sun is Also a Star. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel writes a fake news headline about a teen accepting his destiny to become a doctor.... (full context)
Chapter 3
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel lists the reasons Charlie is an asshole. Up until the Harvard debacle, Charlie had been... (full context)
Chapter 6
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel explains that Charlie stopped liking him when Daniel was six and Charlie was eight. Daniel... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel had tried to call Charlie "hyung," a Korean title for younger brothers to use to... (full context)
Chapter 7
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
The narrator explains that Daniel is right about Charlie: he's an asshole to the core. In time, he'll settle into... (full context)
Chapter 11
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel writes headline stating that he's trapped in a "vortex of expectation and disappointment." He notes... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Later, Daniel has an interview with a Yale alumnus. Yale is only the second best school according... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...mandu, even though he refuses to eat Korean food and pretends to not understand Korean. Daniel knows that Charlie heard and understood. When Charlie is gone, Daniel asks his mom to... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Min Soo opens up the mandu basket, and Daniel watches her clean her steamy glasses. She asks why Charlie failed, and Daniel thinks she... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
...that her sons have it too easy in America but turns her attention back to Daniel. As she serves him a plate of mandu, she reminds him to cut his ponytail... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel goes upstairs to get dressed and stops in the doorway of the spare bedroom to... (full context)
Chapter 16
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel writes a headline about a "resigned" local taking the train to the end of childhood.... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel works on his poem. With three stops to go, the train stops. The lights go... (full context)
Chapter 19
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel decides to walk to his barber, since he's letting the universe dictate his actions today.... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha opens her eyes. She looks embarrassed and hurries on her way. Daniel wonders what she's listening to, and thinks that only poetry makes him feel like she... (full context)
Chapter 20
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...barely believe it as Kelly snatches another record. Suddenly, Natasha hears someone next to her (Daniel) ask if the couple is really just going to steal. Natasha ignores him. To herself,... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel suggests that they tell the staff, but Natasha explains that she can't: the thieves are... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
When Rob greets Natasha, Daniel immediately asks why he and Kelly were stealing. Rob puts his hands up as Daniel... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel smiles and says that catching Rob and Kelly was fun. He looks at Natasha, and... (full context)
Chapter 21
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel's writes a headline about a would-be Casanova shaking a girl's hand and then offering her... (full context)
Chapter 24
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha stops at a crosswalk ahead of Daniel, and he assures the reader that he's not following her. She has her headphones on... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...her screen is cracked and remarks that the guy in the BMW almost killed her. Daniel asks Natasha if she's okay. She asks if Daniel knows how long she's had "this,"... (full context)
Chapter 26
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha thinks it's weird that Daniel looks ready to cry and thinks that new headphones could never replace her now broken... (full context)
Chapter 27
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel thinks that he's never noticed anyone the way he's noticing Natasha. Her hair looks like... (full context)
Chapter 28
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha grumpily asks Daniel if he was following her, and he suggests that maybe he was meant to save... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
When Daniel accuses Natasha of staring, she asks why he's wearing a suit. He explains that he... (full context)
Chapter 29
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel leads Natasha to an independent coffee shop. He orders something complicated, and Natasha orders black... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
They sit down at a table, and Daniel asks Natasha if she needs to be somewhere when she pulls out her phone to... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha goes to the restroom, and Daniel pulls out his notebook. When she returns, she makes a joke about Daniel being a... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel asks Natasha what she'd do with a time machine, and she seems engaged for the... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel insists they're ignoring the grandfather paradox, and Natasha begins to explain another issue with time... (full context)
Chapter 30
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...to save her future. When Natasha is finished explaining the science of time travel to Daniel, he looks like he's in love. She's surprised he hadn't heard of the complications of... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...she never felt like the songs said she was supposed to. Very seriously, Natasha tells Daniel to not fall in love with her. He sputters. When Natasha explains she doesn't believe... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha declares that she's fine not believing in fate or destiny, and Daniel laughs. He seems almost happy about her nihilism and admits he finds it interesting. Natasha... (full context)
Chapter 32
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel's headline reads that he's using science to "get the girl." He explains that there was... (full context)
Chapter 33
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha is both skeptical and intrigued when Daniel tells her about the study. Daniel asks what marriage is for if love doesn't exist,... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel asks if he can have the day to make Natasha fall in love with him.... (full context)
Chapter 34
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel and Natasha argue over which questions to choose, and Daniel insists that they can't skip... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha checks the time and curses that she needs to go. Daniel tries to follow her through the crowds. He reasons that if he were to look... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
After a few blocks, Daniel pulls out his phone, and Natasha mocks his belief in love. Daniel encourages her to... (full context)
Chapter 35
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha admits to the reader that Daniel was smart to use science against her, and she observes that he's too optimistic, earnest,... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...She recognizes she won't be able to please all her subjects, so she suggests that Daniel could comfort the losers with poetry. Natasha checks her phone and thinks of all the... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel tugs Natasha back from the curb, and she thinks it feels familiar. Daniel believes he'll... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Natasha informs Daniel that Asian American men are most likely to die of cancer. He asks if Natasha... (full context)
Chapter 36
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
When Natasha asks Daniel again about his suit, he explains again that he has an interview with a Yale... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
When Daniel admits that he doesn't know what he wants, Natasha seems to shut down. Daniel asks... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha seems confused when Daniel insists that life is really long to do something that she's not passionate about, and... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
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... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel declares that humans are capable of doing so much and dreaming so big, there's no... (full context)
Chapter 37
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha thinks she doesn't want to be having this moment with Daniel. She believes the "poetic heart" isn't trustworthy, as it says that all a person needs... (full context)
Chapter 38
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...and help people bond. Natasha knows that love is just chemicals, so she wonders why Daniel feels different. (full context)
Chapter 39
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel thinks that he does not want to go to his interview, but it is fast... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel wonders if Natasha is a convenient excuse to derail the future his parents set out... (full context)
Chapter 40
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha didn't expect Daniel to give up so easily and she didn't expect to feel disappointed. She reasons that... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel looks sad, and they awkwardly decide to hug. Natasha lets her head rest on his... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...to humanize Natasha. Natasha writes about how hardworking and patriotic she'd be, and thinks that Daniel would be proud of her. She wonders if he'll do the right thing and become... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...said. Natasha considers telling her parents the news, but she really wants to talk to Daniel. She wishes she'd been nicer and gotten his phone number, and finally admits that there... (full context)
Chapter 43
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel's headline reads that he "chose poorly." He admits to the reader that he rescheduled his... (full context)
Chapter 44
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha feels hollow when she doesn't see Daniel in the lobby or outside. She doesn't want to leave the building. She makes it... (full context)
Chapter 45
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Daniel watches Natasha approach and is somewhat disappointed when she asks him straight out what happened... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha asks if Daniel is jeopardizing his future, and Daniel insists he doesn't care—his instinct says that Natasha is... (full context)
Chapter 46
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Daniel is absurdly nervous. He asks Natasha to wait outside, and Natasha reasons that everyone is... (full context)
Chapter 48
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel's headline reads that he's just as much of an asshole as Charlie. He instantly regrets... (full context)
Chapter 49
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
...that she'll be fine waiting outside, and she totally understands. Deep down, however, she wants Daniel to choose her, even though it's awfully early in their relationship for that sort of... (full context)
Chapter 50
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel thinks that when a person is born, God or aliens should give them free passes... (full context)
Chapter 51
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha watches Dae Hyun ring up a customer. He ignores her and Daniel, but silently and mysteriously communicates to Daniel that he should wait to bring the pouch.... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...pats her hair and tries to act mysterious, but only feels self-conscious about her hair. Daniel sincerely says that she'd look beautiful with a pink Afro. Natasha explains she'd only dye... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Daniel angrily takes a step towards Charlie, but Natasha grabs his hand. Charlie gleefully notices and... (full context)
Chapter 52
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Daniel thinks he'd love to light Charlie on fire, but he tries to focus on Natasha's... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
...Natasha explains that she likes it big. Charlie makes an innuendo about the size of Daniel's penis, and Daniel voices the joke for the group. He throws the pouch at his... (full context)
Chapter 53
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...hard at what happened in the store. She thinks that families are the worst as Daniel drags her towards the subway station, and when they get there, he apologizes. Natasha cannot... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel puts Natasha's hand on his chest. She studies her fingers so she doesn't have to... (full context)
Chapter 54
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
The narrator says that it wasn't chance that led Daniel's family to the black hair care business: many South Korean immigrants, including Dae Hyun's cousin,... (full context)
Chapter 55
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel feels as though it's a miracle that Natasha doesn't hate him. He invites her to... (full context)
Chapter 56
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha tries to remain "stoic and unaffected." However, she finds that she does like that Daniel said, poetically, that her hair smells like spring rain. (full context)
Chapter 57
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Natasha moves closer to Daniel again, and Daniel wonders if part of falling in love with someone else includes falling... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel explains that he has a good relationship with Min Soo, as they're both artistic. Natasha... (full context)
Chapter 58
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha tells Daniel that it's hard to love someone when they don't love you back. She knows that... (full context)
Chapter 60
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Daniel imitates Min Soo and tells Natasha that Korean food is the best food. Daniel wonders... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
The complimentary side dish, panchan, arrives. Daniel braces himself to explain what it is, remembering a time a friend asked if it... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
The waitress arrives with seafood soup and two uncooked eggs. Daniel explains that it's called soon dubu, and Natasha mimics him when he cracks his egg... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha agrees that the way people think of Daniel sucks, and Daniel explains he's used to it: his parents think he's not Korean enough,... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha giggles, and Daniel thinks he loves watching her eat. He suggests they eat their now soft-boiled eggs together.... (full context)
Chapter 61
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
The waitress, who has a Korean accent, says that Daniel needs to teach his girlfriend to use chopsticks. She explains that her son dated a... (full context)
Chapter 62
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
There's less than two hours before Natasha's appointment and Daniel wants to do norebang, or Korean karaoke. Norebang is done in small rooms instead of... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel rings a bell and orders dessert. Natasha loves it, and she realizes that she loves... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha asks Daniel if he's a good singer, and he very seriously tells her that he's fantastic. Natasha... (full context)
Chapter 63
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel wishes he'd thought about norebang earlier, since being alone in a dim room with Natasha... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
When the song ends, Natasha looks shyly at Daniel and explains that she loves the song. When Daniel says that it's a bit sad,... (full context)
Chapter 64-67
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha feels as though she cannot possibly stop kissing Daniel. She feels his kiss everywhere in her body as he guides her down onto the... (full context)
Chapter 68
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha slides her hands down Daniel's back to his buttocks, which she thinks is amazing. He kisses her again, and she... (full context)
Chapter 69
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel feels Natasha hesitate and realizes he's a little freaked out by how intense their kiss... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha apologizes for running hot and then cold, and Daniel makes a joke. He insists that most poems are about sex, which Natasha finds questionable.... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
...serious. She suggests that the poet was actually suggesting that people live in the moment. Daniel asks Natasha to tell him about Samuel, and she finally agrees. She says that he... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel confesses that he wonders sometimes if Min Soo made a mistake having him and Charlie,... (full context)
Chapter 70-71
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha kisses Daniel to make him stop talking. She thinks that if he keeps talking, she'll love him,... (full context)
Chapter 72
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha thinks that she and Daniel would still be kissing if their waitress hadn't returned. Natasha wants to take Daniel to... (full context)
Chapter 73-74
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel's headline reads that he's "incapable of leaving well enough alone." He and Natasha sit next... (full context)
Chapter 75
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel meets Natasha's eyes in their reflection in the train window, and he tells her that... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...there’s no such thing as meant to be. She refuses to discuss the matter further. Daniel knows he's being unreasonable, but he persists. Natasha finally admits that she's an undocumented immigrant,... (full context)
Chapter 76
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
...that normally, she'd be embarrassed to fight in public, but she doesn't notice anyone but Daniel. He puts his head in his hands and Natasha wishes she could keep pretending. She... (full context)
Chapter 77
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel says quietly that he postponed his appointment for Natasha. She incredulously asks if that's her... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha closes her eyes. When she opens them, Daniel tells her to have a nice life and turns away. Natasha tells Daniel that he's... (full context)
Chapter 78
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha tells Daniel that he should go. She asks him if he's thinking about her at all, and... (full context)
Chapter 79
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel's headline reads that he's convinced his life is "complete and utter shit." He watches Natasha... (full context)
Chapter 80
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...her hands, but Natasha and Dae Hyun believe in determinism: one action leads to another. Daniel lives somewhere in between. The narrator insists, however, that once Natasha and Daniel met, whether... (full context)
Chapter 81-82
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...space. She thinks the room is her church, and this is where she would've taken Daniel. She would've asked him to write poems about the astounding number of things that just... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel writes a poem called "Symmetries." he writes that he'll stay on his side, and an... (full context)
Chapter 85
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel isn't sure what to do with himself. He thinks he wants to get a hobo... (full context)
Chapter 88
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel offers a headline that says he thought the day couldn't get worse, but he was... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Charlie is surprised, but he just insults Daniel's appearance and asks him about his interview for the "Second-Best School." Daniel admits he doesn't... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Charlie gets close to Daniel and tells him that he doesn't like him because he's too Korean—he spits that they're... (full context)
Chapter 92
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Dae Hyun sends Daniel to get ice for his swollen lip and berates Charlie. Daniel sits down in the... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel is shocked; this is the most Dae Hyun has said to him at one time.... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel puts his jacket back on and moves to the front of the store. Dae Hyun... (full context)
Chapter 94
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...want to choose one or the other. Natasha finds this wholly unsatisfying, and thinks that Daniel would never think like that. She asks Rob if he believes in true love, and... (full context)
Chapter 95
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
When Daniel leaves Dae Hyun's store, there's a young woman playing a violin outside. She looks bedraggled,... (full context)
Chapter 97
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
As Daniel enters the subway station in Harlem, he prays to the subway gods that he'll make... (full context)
Chapter 98
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...why those dancers were dancing instead of doing something more productive. She reasons that if Daniel were here, he'd suggest that the dancers were trying to bring a little bit of... (full context)
Chapter 99
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
As Daniel races out of the Fifty-Second Street subway, he almost runs into a couple, both with... (full context)
Chapter 101
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel studies the directory in Natasha's building, but he can't figure out who she could possibly... (full context)
Chapter 102
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...making a joke about her coming back for the "better brother." She asks him for Daniel's phone number, and agrees when he asks if they got in a fight. (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...asks seriously if Natasha has a fetish for Korean boys. She insists she just likes Daniel, even when Charlie scoffs that boys like him are easy to come by. Natasha realizes... (full context)
Chapter 103
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel almost drops his phone when it rings. He answers the strange number: it's Natasha. When... (full context)
Chapter 104
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha finds Daniel sitting on a bench outside the office building. She feels strangely gleeful and her smile... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha apologizes for not telling him about her impending deportation, and Daniel admits he was just upset to learn that something uncontrollable was going to tear them... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel takes Natasha's hand, kisses her palm, and asks what her good news is. She explains... (full context)
Chapter 105
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel gleefully tells Natasha that his interview appointment is in the same building. He's excited to... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
When they get to the top floor, Daniel leads Natasha up a final flight of stairs to a door. It's locked and has... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel shoots Natasha a look to leave the man alone, but she ignores him and tells... (full context)
Chapter 106
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...thinks that Natasha reminds him of his wife. This is why he lets Natasha and Daniel on the roof. He remembers how he and his wife used to look at each... (full context)
Chapter 107
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel looks out at the city, and Natasha teases him about writing a poem. He remarks... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Finally, Natasha pulls away and makes Daniel back up. She asks if all their kisses are going to be insane, and Daniel... (full context)
Chapter 108
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Sitting on the rooftop and watching the sun begin to set feels magical to Daniel. He and Natasha hold hands and look through their list of questions. The next one... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel says he thinks that everyone on earth is connected by little bits of good in... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel asks Natasha what she does believe in, and she says she's interested in why people... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
After asking a few clarifying questions, Daniel declares that dark matter is love—it's the attracting, connecting force in the universe. Natasha is... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha insists they need to wait to stare into each other's eyes, so Daniel asks Natasha to recall her most treasured memory. She says it was the first time... (full context)
Chapter 110
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel is ten minutes late when he knocks on Attorney Fitzgerald's door. Nobody answers, so he... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...never do the wrong thing. Attorney Fitzgerald's door opens and he ignores the paralegal and Daniel's hand. (full context)
Chapter 113
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel notices that on Attorney Fitzgerald's desk is a file with Natasha's name on it. He... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Attorney Fitzgerald insists the American dream can mean many things, but is shocked when Daniel insists Dae Hyun will cut him off if he doesn't agree to become a doctor.... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel asks if Attorney Fitzgerald is going to let his lover go, and Fitzgerald says they're... (full context)
Chapter 114-115
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Jeremy Fitzgerald lied to Daniel: he couldn't stop Natasha's deportation because he spent the afternoon with Hannah Winter at a... (full context)
Chapter 116-117
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha thinks about the coming winter when Daniel emerges from the building. He has a grim look as he approaches Natasha and tells... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Daniel writes a poem about how hearts don't break, since they're not made of a hard... (full context)
Chapter 118
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha and Daniel sit outside. Finally, Natasha lets Daniel comfort her, and she says she needs to go... (full context)
Chapter 119
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha agrees to take Daniel to her apartment. As they walk, Daniel thinks of a headline in which he thwarts... (full context)
Chapter 120
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
On the train to Brooklyn, Natasha throws out facts about Jamaica. Daniel asks her for a good thing she remembers about Jamaica, and Natasha admits that she... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel asks if Natasha's parents cared that Rob was white, and Natasha admits they never met... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...She thinks she'll compare every skyline to that of New York, and every boy to Daniel. (full context)
Chapter 121
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel shares that his most embarrassing moment was earlier, in Dae Hyun's store. He suggests that... (full context)
Chapter 122
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
As she walks with Daniel, Natasha is ashamed of her rundown neighborhood. She comments that people are staring at them,... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha pulls Daniel past a row of clapboard houses to a brick apartment building. Natasha warns Daniel that... (full context)
Chapter 123
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Natasha introduces Daniel as a friend, and Patricia eyes him. Daniel looks around the living room and realizes... (full context)
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel sees hurt, anger, and disbelief on Natasha's face as she turns to Samuel. Natasha tells... (full context)
Chapter 124
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Natasha explains that she always lets it go when Patricia asks, but the combination of Daniel and Samuel's forced Jamaican accent makes her angry. She sputters that she heard him say... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
...pull Peter into a hug and motion for Natasha to join them, but she hugs Daniel first. (full context)
Chapter 125
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Peter and Natasha's parents go ahead to the airport, and Daniel and Natasha take a cab together. In the backseat, they decide that if she weren't... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Natasha tells Daniel he shouldn't be a doctor and confesses that maybe she won't be a data scientist... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
For the final two questions, Natasha isn't sure what she'd save from a fire, but Daniel would save his notebook. Natasha would find Samuel's death the most disturbing, and Daniel would... (full context)
Chapter 126
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel sets a timer on his phone and holds Natasha's hands. Natasha thinks about what she... (full context)
Chapter 127-128
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Daniel ignores phone calls from his parents and thinks that maybe he won't go to college.... (full context)
Chapter 129
Immigration and the American Dream Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha and Daniel try to stay in touch. However, their days soon fill up. Natasha enrolls in school... (full context)
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Five years later, Patricia gets sick and dies. Natasha considers calling Daniel, but thinks it's been too long. Peter thrives in Jamaica, and years later, he'll name... (full context)
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
Daniel's parents sell their store to an African American couple, live part-time in South Korea, and... (full context)
Passion vs. Reason Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Natasha begins to wonder if she imagined what happened with Daniel, but thanks to him, she does find her passion studying physics. She thinks about what... (full context)
Epilogue
Interconnectedness and Destiny Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Connection Theme Icon
...peers over the seat, his eyes full of love. Natasha meets his eyes and says, "Daniel." (full context)