Study Guide

A Step from Heaven Chapter 11

By An Na

Chapter 11

Burying Lies

  • Young Ju's now in second grade and feeling more comfortable with English; so much so that she's eager to share something she has on her mind with the whole class.
  • That something is the news that her little brother has died.
  • Don't worry—she's lying. Joon Ho is all well and good.
  • So why does she lie? Because she wants to be "the only Park now." She's keeping the family name "like boy."
  • Mrs. Sheldon, her teacher, tells the class to give Young Ju "warm fuzzies," which are basically balls of yarn that the class makes and then gives away; Young Ju also gets to choose a book first for silent reading.
  • In other words, she gets all sorts of perks for having a dead brother.
  • Unfortunately, maybe too many perks—the school ends up sending condolence flowers to her house, where Gomo receives them.
  • Luckily for Young Ju, Gomo's English still isn't too good so she doesn't understand what the condolence card means when it says "sorry about [your] loss."
  • So Young Ju makes up another story about how she lost a school spelling bee and came in second.
  • Which of course doesn't worry Gomo at all because coming in second at a spelling bee is great news.
  • Young Ju tells Gomo she's going outside to play, but really, she's going outside to bury all the stuff she got at school today—her warm fuzzies and the card.
  • When she gets back inside, Uhmma's home and super-proud of Young Ju.
  • She even makes Young Ju talk to her about what Young Ju wants to become—a doctor, lawyer, professor, maybe—all of which inspires Young Ju to be the "famous Park in the family. Maybe even better than the first son."
  • Later that night, Young Ju sneaks into the kitchen and takes a flashlight out of a kitchen drawer.
  • Why? Because she has to study of course… for Friday's spelling test.