Please wait while we process your payment
If you don't see it, please check your spam folder. Sometimes it can end up there.
Don’t have an account?
Create Your Account
Sign up for your FREE 7-day trial
Already have an account? Log in
Choose Your Plan
$4.99/month + tax
$24.99/year + tax
Save over 50% with a SparkNotes PLUS Annual Plan!
for a group?
Get Annual Plans at a discount when you buy 2 or more!
$18.74 /subscription + tax
Subtotal $37.48 + tax
on 2-49 accounts
on 50-99 accounts
Want 100 or more?
for a customized plan.
You'll be billed after your free trial ends.
7-Day Free Trial
Renews December 17, 2023
December 10, 2023
Discounts (applied to next billing)
This is not a valid promo code.
(one code per order)
Annual Plan - Group Discount
SparkNotes Plus subscription is $4.99/month or $24.99/year as selected above. The free trial period is the first 7 days of your subscription. TO CANCEL YOUR SUBSCRIPTION AND AVOID BEING CHARGED, YOU MUST CANCEL BEFORE THE END OF THE FREE TRIAL PERIOD. You may cancel your subscription on your Subscription and Billing page or contact Customer Support at firstname.lastname@example.org. Your subscription will continue automatically once the free trial period is over. Free trial is available to new customers only.
For the next 7 days, you'll have access to awesome PLUS stuff like AP English test prep, No Fear Shakespeare translations and audio, a note-taking tool, personalized dashboard, & much more!
You’ve successfully purchased a group discount. Your group members can use the joining link below to redeem their group membership. You'll also receive an email with the link.
Members will be prompted to log in or create an account to redeem their group membership.
Thanks for creating a SparkNotes account! Continue to start your free trial.
Your PLUS subscription has expired
Some time later, the Thibaults meet Coss and Watanabe
in Lucca, a small city in Italy where opera composer Giacomo Puccini
was born. The Thibaults have come to attend the wedding of Coss
and Watanabe. The narrator tells us that Edith Thibault, in contrast
to the other three, “still believed she was lucky.” Coss says twice
that she is happy, and she kisses Watanabe.
The two men go off to see if they can find a bar. Leaving
his wife, Thibault feels a moment of panic. Watanabe tells Thibault
that these days he mainly translates books so that he has plenty
of time to attend Coss’s rehearsals. Watanabe and Coss will live
in Milan. Watanabe stops and tells Thibault that not one of the
newspapers he has read mentioned the two female terrorists. He wonders
if the same was true in the French papers. Thibault says it was.
Watanabe has written to the newspapers asking them to correct the
mistake, but none of them have. Watanabe says it is almost as if
Carmen and Beatriz “never existed.”
Watanabe says that when he called Iglesias and told him
about his marriage to Coss, Iglesias advised him not rush into anything. But
Watanabe says he didn’t want to wait. Thibault tells Watanabe he
was right to marry, but privately he begins to suspect that Watanabe
and Carmen were lovers. Thibault remembers how Carmen’s face would
brighten whenever she saw Watanabe. Thibault can’t get Carmen’s
face out of his mind. Watanabe says that when he hears Coss sing,
he thinks well of the world. Thibault says out loud, “She is a beautiful
girl.” It is not clear whether he means Carmen or Coss.
The narrator says that Thibault feels sure that Watanabe
and Coss had married for “the love of each other and the love of
all the people they remembered.” As Coss and Mrs. Thibault come
into view and extend their arms, Thibault is overcome with joy.
Most epilogues tie up loose ends, but this one raises
more questions than it answers. Coss and Watanabe, who have both
lost their lovers, marry each other. It is unclear whether they
are happy, or whether they truly love each other. Coss says twice
that she loves Watanabe, as if she is trying to convince herself.
And something about the way Watanabe protests that he didn’t want
to wait to marry Coss makes Thibault suddenly suspect that Watanabe
and Carmen were lovers.
Still, it is possible that Watanabe and Coss have found
happiness together; the novel is ambiguous on this point. Certainly,
throughout the novel Patchett has suggested that true love is often
a product of chance and circumstance. Watanabe only fell in love
with Carmen, and Hosokawa with Coss, because of the bizarre situation
that threw them together. Now that Watanabe and Coss have been brought
together by tragedy; perhaps they have truly fallen in love.
It is also true that the hostages and the captors often
thought, during the standoff, that the intensity of their love for
each other would be hard to maintain in the outside world. Perhaps
Coss and Watanabe feel affection for each other, and although it
does not approach the passion they felt for Hosokawa and Carmen,
it is sufficient for the real world.
Coss and Watanabe’s marriage is in part a memorial to
the people they have lost. As Thibault says, they married for “the
love of each other and the love of all the people they remembered.”
Ace your assignments with our guide to Bel Canto!