AHHHHHHHHH THIS CHAPTER. I CAN’T EVEN.
It’s my favorite chapter in the book because Hinton ties everything up so beautifully (not neatly, because it’s life and real and raw and there can’t be a pat, simple, one-size-fits-all ending). Many tears were shed as I finished reading The Outsiders today. It’s so powerful and achingly deep. And the very last line of the book? ASOIFJWOEIRSFDKS.
Love how Darry and Soda still stick up for Dally (in the courtroom) even when it could reflect badly on them, even cause them to be separated.
Ponyboy is confused and listless at the beginning of this chapter. He’s shut out the reality of Johnny’s death and in doing so, he’s shut himself out of the real world. He has trouble concentrating. He’s drifting away and even though Darry tries to bring him back by telling him that just because you lose someone doesn’t mean you stop living, too, it takes Soda’s problems to jolt Ponyboy out of his own.
But he PICKS UP THE GLASS SO CARS WON’T GET A FLAT TIRE.
I love him so much.
It’s cool to get the details of the Curtis brothers’ middle names: Darrel Shaynne, Sodapop Patrick, and Ponyboy Michael. ❤ Also, I’d like to point out that perfectly good pancakes can, in fact, turn out green. (Sometimes when I make blueberry pancakes all the juice bleeds into the batter and turns it green for some reason.) So don’t think that Soda’s weird for making green pancakes! *grins*
This chapter is one of the times when Soda really, really shines. He wanted to marry Sandy even though she was pregnant with someone else’s child. He understands both Darry and Ponyboy’s side of things and tries (successfully) to reconcile them. He brings the entire family together in a time of grief and near-crisis. It’s amazing.
Then there’s Johnny’s letter. Which I’m not going to quote here, but…I cried. Duh. Especially all the stuff he said about Dally and telling Ponyboy to show Dally a sunset. Because it’s too late. And that just…ugggggh. So horrible.
But the book doesn’t end on a low note. Ponyboy takes up the mission to bridge the gap between what people see when they look at others and who ‘the others’ actually are. And in order to do this, he writes.
Quotes I like:
The judge questioned everyone carefully, but nothing real emotional or exciting happened like it does on TV. (p. 168)
“We’re all we’ve got left. We ought to be able to stick together against everything. If we don’t have each other, we don’t have anything.” (p. 176)
It was quiet except for the sound of our feet on the cement and the dry, scraping sound of leaves blowing across the street. (p. 177)
I guess I was still out of shape, because we all three tied. No. I guess we all just wanted to stay together. (p. 177)
And I wish I could quote the last three or four pages of the book because it’s all so good.
-Who is your favorite character in The Outsiders?
-What is your biggest takeaway from this read-along?
-On a scale of 1 to 5 stars (1=worst, 5=best), what would you rate The Outsiders?