I think that the most obvious shocker of all in this section was David’s death. There’s no point in talking about anything else first seeing as David’s death really changes everything.
The first part of the section looks at Norah and how she has mostly moved on by starting yet another romance with a man named Fredric. Her business is going well and she’s in Paris on vacation. While she’s there she meets Paul to tell him the news of his father’s passing. It’s interesting that Paul points out to his mother that David never reached out to him, that he never tried to have meaningful conversations with him, when, in just the previous section, David was talking about how when Paul came to dinner and he tried to talk about something deep or serious, Paul would grow tired, or have to leave and avoid the conversation. It seems that Paul was avoiding getting close to David just as much as David stayed distant. Norah seemed shocked by the death but she moved on considerably fast considering it took her over 20 years and she still hasn’t gotten over the death of her daughter.
Caroline took the news in a totally different way. Three months after the fact, Caroline found that David had died and that he’d left a large sum of money in an account for Phoebe. While Caroline is having a hard time letting go and allowing Phoebe to move on with her life, this money gives her some security. Now Phoebe will have enough money to live on her own and be taken care of for a while. Also, Al’s accident really brought her fears and reservations to the front line. Now that Al has stopped being a trucker and they have more time to spend together, Caroline realizes that now is time for the to start their lives together and let Phoebe live hers. At least that’s what I hope she’s come to realize.
What was most disappointing about David’s death was that I somehow feel like he got let off the hook. I know that he spent his whole life feeling terribly about his secret and that it changed him and nearly destroyed his family, but he should have come clean. David wasn’t a bad man; he was trapped and afraid and made a poor decision that cost him his family’s happiness. I’m afraid that Paul and Norah are going to find out about Phoebe and they’re going to hate David and be glad that he’d dead and never know his motives like we do. They’ll never know how he struggled and how he hurt and how he felt like he could never come clean. I wanted them to realize that David wasn’t a bad person just because he made a bad choice. I’m just not sure that Paul and Norah are the kind of people that will forgive.
I’m excited for the last section! We’ll get to see what finally happens to Phoebe and Paul. I predict that they’ll somehow meet, especially now that David’s gone and Paul and Norah will most likely riffle through his things and find some connection. Hopefully they won’t hold it against his memory forever.