Study Guide

A Northern Light Chapter 37

By Jennifer Donnelly

Chapter 37

  • In present day, Mattie reads one of Grace's letters, in which Grace talks about her relationship with her mother, and Mattie realizes that she desperately misses her own mother.
  • She remembers happy times, but also how her mother told her to keep her virtue when Mattie started menstruating—much embarrassment ensued when Mattie asked where her virtue was located.
  • Even though Mamma revealed where virtue is located, she never told Mattie how to tell when a man loves her.
  • Mattie thinks she knows why Grace gave her virtue (code for virginity) to Chester, and she recalls that Minnie has said to pay attention to the man's behavior.
  • But it's no use: Mattie's mother said that Mattie would know if a man loved her, and Mattie knows that Royal doesn't love her. She calls both herself and Grace sad and stupid for loving men who will never love them back.

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