| Quote #1
She appeared to want nothing from life but a child and a loving husband; it is important to note these singulars—she did not want children, she wanted me, just me, and she got me; she did not want men in her life, she wanted a man, the right man, and shortly before she died, she found him. (2.3)
We see examples throughout the novel that show us how strong John's relationship with his mother is. Even though his birth is unplanned, she loves him utterly and completely. John has a remarkable relationship with his whole family – his family life is secure and loving both in good times and bad.
| Quote #2
His name was Dan Needham. How many times I have prayed to God that he was my real father! (2.14)
John is totally right. Dan's the man. Step-parents tend to get a bad rap in literary depictions, but John knows that Dan is a better dad to him than any other birth father could ever be.
| Quote #3
"They're sort of hard to control—my cousins," I said. "That's the problem."
"YOU MAKE THEM SOUND LIKE WILD ANIMALS," Owen said.
"They are—kind of," I said. (2.245-247)
At the beginning of the novel, John's relationship with his cousins is based on fear. Throwing Owen into the mix totally changes the dynamic though – all of a sudden the Eastman kids calm down, partly because Owen freaks them out so much.