By: Fairouz Tamer
Have you ever found that romantic & polite boy, not to mention, a poet too? Well if you haven’t, you may be looking for a Daniel Bae type. Daniel is the good son, the good student, and the good any and everything. Unlike his brother, who is much more of a mess, and is very narcissistic. Daniel does believe in love & fate, unlike his crush jamaica-born pragmatist Natasha Kingsley. Natasha believes in science and facts and neither in love nor in destiny. And of course not the kind of a girl to fall in love with a boy. Not when her family is being deported from the US to Jamaica.
Meanwhile, Daniel Bae is preparing for an interview for Dartmouth’s medical school program. He comes from a Korean family, and his parents Dae Hyun and Min Soo encourage him to pursue a career as a doctor.
Daniel and his friend Omar get on the subway only to be in the same subway car as Natasha when it stalls for a moment. The conductor takes the time to reassure the passengers that everything is fine. He begins telling a story about a friend who missed a train on 9/11 and, had he been on time, would have died since he worked at the World Trade Center. He concludes his point with the notion that they are there for a reason. And, that you should “open your heart to destiny.” The guys get off at Grand Central Station, where Daniel spots Natasha and is instantly smitten with her. He also notices her jacket, which reads “Deus Ex Machina”, a phrase he had been thinking about the same morning. Because of this, he realizes he has to go after her. Did I show enough reasons why Daniel is a real keeper ( a hopeless romantic too)?
Natasha is walking down the street while listening to music, unaware of a crazed driver on the road. Daniel sees him and rushes to save Natasha before she walks into the driver’s path, such a superhero. She’s a little shaken up and goes to sit down. Daniel sits next to her to talk to for a while. He couldn’t help but stare at her face enough, while his eyes spoke what he felt. Daniel says to himself he’ll do an experiment where he can make her fall in love with him in a day. He tells her about a survey that was taken between couples to determine whether they truly love each other. He asks Natasha some questions, trying to impress her. She, however, isn’t impressed and thinks it’s corny.
On the long journey through the book, Daniel will be uncovering and genuinely willing to win Natasha’s heart, before leaving from the US. Furthermore, some good peaks had to be revealed.
- Everything happens for a reason.
- You have to start at the beginning.
- No one is supposed to be good at everything.
- Everyone loses something sometimes.
- To grow up is to grow apart.
- Having dreams never killed anybody.
- Separation is not fatal.
- Life doesn’t always go the way you plan.
- Everyone has at least a little good in them.
- The eyes are the windows to the soul.
- Time counts.
- If you don’t go now, you’ll always regret it.
- You can’t persuade someone to love you.
- Uncertainty is your enemy.
- Almost everyone believes that there’s some meaning, some willfulness in life
- Nothing lasts forever
- No one can put a price on losing everything.
The odds are stacked against our central couple due to their fundamental differences — not only their cultural ones but their personalities. She’s a realist; he’s a dreamer. She thinks love is just a series of chemicals that create temporary feelings of arousal and intimacy, while he believes in fate and soulmates and two people — them, in particular — being “meant to be.” What else but fate, he suggests, could’ve led to their meet-cute and subsequent coincidences that brought them together? But despite their many differences, these two are both outsiders from immigrant families. They’re at odds with their parents and struggle to be true to themselves. They find something in each other that sparks a sense of safety, happiness, and ultimately love — even if their future together is uncertain.