"As a kid I understood that people were different colors, but in my head white and black and brown were like types of chocolate. Dad was the white chocolate, mom was the dark chocolate, and I was the milk chocolate. But we were all just chocolate. I didn't know any of it had anything to do with 'race.'"

This quotation, which appears in Chapter 4, reflects the youthful innocence that Trevor possesses regarding his understanding of race. Despite the fact that the color of his skin significantly influences how he navigates his childhood, he remains blissfully unaware of its sociopolitical implications. Instead, he ignores the social construct of race and observes people simply as they are. This ability to look past the biases and stereotypes surrounding diverse groups of people ultimately serves him in his adult life as he forms cross-cultural relationships.

"When it was time to pick my name, she chose Trevor, a name with no meaning whatsoever in South Africa, no precedent in my family. It's not even a Biblical name. It's just a name. My mother wanted her child beholden to no fate. She wanted me to be free to go anywhere, do anything, be anyone."

Noah explains the significance of his name in Chapter 5, emphasizing that the lack of history associated with “Trevor” is what ultimately makes it such an impactful choice. By giving him a name with no ties to family, cultural tradition, or religion, Patricia symbolically offers her son a blank slate with which to create his life. Throughout the course of the novel, Trevor continually reflects the ironically meaningful nature of his name by crafting unique opportunities for himself and pursuing a life beyond his community’s imagination.

“Love is a creative act. When you love someone you create a new world for them. My mother did that for me, and with the progress I made and the things I learned, I came back and created a new world and a new understanding for her. After that, she never raised her hand to her children again.”

As Noah describes the differences in the way he and his younger brother Andrew were raised in Chapter 18, he offers this explanation of what love means to him. The connection he sees between genuine love and creativity not only speaks to his eventual future as a performer, it emphasizes his inherently altruistic nature. Although Trevor and his mother have their moments of disagreement, the fact that he recognizes the impact that their acts of love have on one another highlights the significance of their relationship.