In English class, Eleanor says that it seems like Shakespeare is obviously making fun of Romeo and Juliet. Park says that the play has lasted so long because people want to remember what it’s like to be young and in love.

On the bus home, Eleanor tells Park that the Smiths song on her textbook is part of a wish list of songs she’d like to hear. That night, Park makes Eleanor a mix tape.

Summary: Chapter 11


When Eleanor comes home, her mom dabs vanilla behind her ears, the way she used to in happier times. Later that night, Eleanor wakes up to the sound of Richie shouting and her mom crying. All the kids are awake, but they say and do nothing. In the morning, Eleanor’s mom is visibly bruised. Mouse has peed on Eleanor during the night. Eleanor washes off very carefully, avoiding Richie, and she changes into yesterday’s clothes, which are the cleanest ones she has left.

Summary: Chapter 12


Park sets the comics and mix tape on the seat next to him. When Eleanor gets on the bus, he can tell something’s wrong, because she’s wearing yesterday’s clothes, her hair is a mess, and she doesn’t have her schoolbooks with her. Eleanor tells him to take the tape back because she doesn’t have any way to listen to it, so Park hands her his Walkman. For the first time, they stay with each other off the bus and walk to their lockers together. Park makes Eleanor laugh.


Eleanor is mad at herself for admitting to Park that she doesn’t have a tape player. She thinks about Park, who is one of the very few Asian people she’s ever met in her life, and wonders why he has green eyes. She considers telling both Park and the school guidance counselor more secrets, like the fact that she doesn’t have a toothbrush.

After gym, Eleanor discovers that her locker has been covered with maxi pads colored with red marker. Eleanor starts to cry but hides it as she peels the pads off her locker. Two black girls, DeNice and Beebi, stay behind and help her clean up. Eleanor realizes that she likes Park because even after everything that has happened, the only thing she can think about is seeing him.