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When You Reach Me

When You Reach Me

by Rebecca Stead

Forgiveness and Compassion Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

"Don't call him Quack," Mom said. "That's an awful name for a human being."

"Even a human who's quackers?"

"I don't care it's still awful."

"Well what do you call him?"

"I don't call him anything," she said, "but I think of him as the laughing man." (5.3-7)

Miranda's mom is always concerned with the well-being and dignity of fellow human beings. She is the moral compass of the novel. Here she urges Miranda to see the Laughing Man sympathetically.

Quote #2

"But first you have to learn the V-cut," he told us. "Very important. Except he said "Velly important," stretched his eyelids back with two fingers, and bowed down low – it was the classic fake-Chinese act. I had never seen a grown-up do it before. If Mom had been there, she would have whacked him on the head with a plastic tray. (18.2)

Even when not present, Miranda carries her mother's values of compassion and empathy with her. Why wouldn't Mom like Jimmy's impression?

Quote #3

Her bringing the chips and cookies is supposed to help somehow. It's not really the cookies, she says. It's the fact that someone brings them. (26.16)

Miranda's mom volunteers to run a parenting group for pregnant women in jail. Why might that be? Why does she bring the inmates cookies and chips?

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