There’s Someone Inside Your House

by

Stephanie Perkins

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There’s Someone Inside Your House: Chapter 17 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Chris and Ollie turn on all the lights in their large, Victorian house.  The light creates only the illusion of safety, but it’s better than nothing. Later, Makani lies in Ollie’s bed, struggling to fall asleep. Chris gave Ollie the choice of sleeping on the floor of his room or on the couch downstairs. Ollie opted to set up a sleeping bag in the upstairs hallway outside Makani’s room. Every time Makani falls asleep, she starts dreaming about the hooded figure lunging at her. Ollie comes into the room and lies beside her. He sets an alarm so he can sneak back into the hallway before Chris wakes up.
Though the bright lights will do little to protect Chris, Ollie, and Makani against a murderous villain like David, having even the illusion of safety helps them cope with the overwhelming terror of their present situation. Makani tries to sleep and recover from that evening, but nightmares about the attack keep her up all night; it’s clear that the attack has had a significant psychological influence on her.
Themes
Trauma, Loss, and Grief Theme Icon
Ollie and Makani head down to the kitchen the next morning. Chris is making breakfast. They sit down at the table, and Chris brings them coffee. He pauses before awkwardly insinuating that he knows Ollie and Makani slept in the same room last night. He tells Ollie that the brothers will share Chris’s room from now on and reminds Ollie and Makani to use protection. Makani blushes and changes the subject. She asks Chris if there are any updates about David’s whereabouts. Chris says the tracker dogs followed David into the fields near the school but lost his scent at the river. Everyone reaffirms how shocked they are to learn that David is the killer. Rodrigo’s parents had always found their son’s best friend to be polite and mild-mannered. David’s parents were also surprised.
The book intersperses the horror plot with banal elements of the teenage experience, such as this mortifying encounter in which Chris awkwardly tries to counsel young teens about having safe sex. Once more, the book emphasizes how normal David is, and how this surprises people who knew him—they never suspected that he could be capable of such evil. In so doing, the narrative advances the premise that it’s impossible to fully know other people. It’s also interesting that the real explanation for who has been committing the murders if far less sensational than the town gossip had made it out to be—this just goes to show how far off-base gossip can be. 
Themes
Gossip vs. Communication Theme Icon
Quotes
Chris makes plans to drive Ollie and Makani to Grandma Young’s house so Makani can pick up some clothes and other essentials. After that, Chris will go to work, and Ollie will drive Makani to the hospital. Makani has received a new slew of texts from concerned friends, but she’s too distraught to reply just yet. There’s also missed call and voicemail from Makani’s father, though neither he nor Makani’s mother seem particularly concerned about Makani.
This scene offers additional insight into what Makani’s relationship with her parents is like. Makani’s father has called but only puts in minimal effort, while Makani’s mother doesn’t call at all—all while their daughter has almost become the victim of a serial killer. In their emotional unavailability, the novel highlights one way that Makani’s big move from Hawaii has done little to change her life. Her family relationships are just as flawed, and her emotional well-being is just as compromised.
Themes
Trauma, Loss, and Grief Theme Icon
Inner Change  Theme Icon
When Chris, Makani, and Ollie arrive at Grandma Young’s house, the yard is swarming with news crews. Makani is apprehensive about reentering the house, but Ollie holds her hand and they enter through the front door together. Still, it’s impossible not to relive the horrific attack as she walks through the house.
Ollie’s supportive presence helps Makani find the strength to revisit the scene where she recently suffered. With this, the novels suggests that it’s emotional work and supporting relationships that have the power to alter a person’s life (rather than simply changing location).
Themes
Trauma, Loss, and Grief Theme Icon
Inner Change  Theme Icon
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