The Sun Is Also a Star
Nicola Yoon
Contributed by Carey Speaks
Chapter 21-30
Summary

Daniel cannot believe he just shook the hand of the cute girl while wearing a suit. He thinks he is no match to his brother, for he would have said something charming to woo the girl. Outside the store, Natasha sees Rob and Kelly and spies on them for a while. She reminisces on how she met Rob, dated him, and finally breaking-up with him. Subsequently, the narrator explains the concept of ‘half-life’ in “Half-life: A History of Decay” from various perspectives, including nuclear physics, biology, chemistry, and love.

Daniel still claims that he is not following the cute girl with no name (Natasha) when he manages to save her from a speeding BMW driver; her phone’s screen cracks and the headphones become spoiled. He offers to buy her new ones, although she seems like she will object. After the narration briefly shifts to the BMW driver in “Donald Christiansen: A History of Money”, Natasha notices that Red Tie (Daniel) is about to cry. To her, this is funny, and she recalls the story about the headphones, her earlier relationship with her dad, and the current situation of that relationship. They were once close, but now they are drifting apart.

At this very same moment, Daniel is deeply falling in love. His senses are heightened, and he already sees a future with the cute girl. Natasha finally tells him her name, and they stare at each other in turns. He wants them to get something to eat or drink but she is not interested, and that does not make him give up on asking. They walk together, and he chooses a non-franchised coffee shop from where they order their drinks. Then, sitting in a corner, they talk about different things including time travel, the grandfather paradox, and the Novikov self-consistency principle. He realizes that she is not only cute, but also smart, and he falls in love a second time.

Natasha reveals that she did not tell Daniel the whole truth about the things she would do with a time machine. Also, she has noticed that he is falling for her — and warns him not to, saying that she will not love him back since she does not believe in it. They talk about the topic of love, which was when Daniel suggests the idea of making her fall in love with him scientifically.

Analysis

These chapters are about two people who find each other charming and are slowly falling in love — one knowingly, but not to the other. To Daniel, just shaking the girl’s hand seems insufficient and lame considering the different approaches people like Charlie would utilize. Although Natasha broke up with Rob for cheating with Kelly, she cannot avoid spying on them for she was once in love with him. The act of thinking through the things Rob is telling Kelly shows that she has enough experience with Rob, where she can anticipate his every move and the words he uses to dupe the girls he dates.

The chapter on half-life tries to analyze love using science, an indication that Natasha will use science to counter Daniel’s attempts of igniting love between them. On the other hand, Daniel is unable to tread on another path since his determination focuses on getting Natasha despite her denials. Necessarily, a power beyond him might be at work, leading him towards his destiny. For instance, he saves her from the speeding car and mutters fate-related words as if saving her was a deliberate concept from a higher power. This belief portrays Daniel as somehow religious although he fails to acknowledge the belief. On the other hand, Natasha thinks about her dad and their past from the sight of the broken headphones — an indication that she cares about the little things that have a significance in her life.

Daniel is a determined character who knows what he wants, and on this occasion he has control over the situation, as compared to when he is at home where his parents want him to become a doctor. Here, he wants to have Natasha, and he is not giving up until he has her. Going to a non-franchised coffee shop shows his support for family-owned businesses, for he understands their significance in the lives of the individuals who own them. At this point, he is thinking about his father’s store, and he reacts in the same way he wants people to respond when choosing a hair beauty shop.

Natasha, on the other hand, already has some experience on the issue of love, and for this reason, she has no trouble spotting Daniel’s intentions. She tries to block the feelings since the deportation still stands and she cannot bear falling in love, and then leaving for Jamaica never to see her lover ever again.

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