Study Guide

Hush, Hush Plot Analysis

By Becca Fitzpatrick

Plot Analysis

Exposition

Welcome to the Wonderful Worlds of Fallen Angels and Sex Ed

Whenever there's a prologue, like there is with this book, there are usually two starting points: the one laid out in the prologue and the one presented in the first chapter. That's exactly what we have going on in Hush, Hush.

In the prologue, we get a taste of the dark and secretive world of fallen angels and Nephilim, and we get the groundwork for a major conflict between Chauncey and the mystery boy (Patch) who confronts him and demands that he turn himself over for service every Cheshvan. With that, we have all the makings for a fantastic fantasy feud.

In the first chapter, we get the vitals on our narrator, Nora. Here's what we know: She's a leggy, brainy brunette with a loud-mouthed best friend (Vee) who brings some excitement to Nora's pretty reserved personality. Oh, and Nora's father was murdered the previous year.

The status quo is rocked when, horror of horrors, the biology teacher changes the seating chart and Nora is forced to partner up with the transfer named Patch. He's dark, enigmatic, not exactly academically-inclined, and he puts the moves on Nora right away. Nice.

Rising Action

The Good, the Bad, and the Confusing

After Patch comes into Nora's life, all kinds of weird stuff starts going down. For one thing, someone in a ski mask begins stalking her. This creep attacks her while she's driving home one night, watches her at an amusement park, breaks into her room, jumps Vee, and kills a homeless woman moments after she exchanges directions for Nora's coat and hat. Nora thinks this same person is responsible for beating up Marcie Millar, Coldwater High's resident mean girl.

Nora also notices something freaky going on with her mind. She experiences things that never actually happen—like falling off a rollercoaster—in eerily vivid detail. She also feels like her memory is being altered, and she's convinced someone can speak words directly to her brain.

Add Nora's conflicting emotions about Patch, her slow discovery of info about fallen angels and Nephilim, and the intro of a few more shady characters—including Miss Greene, Elliot, and Jules—and things are definitely heating up for our main girl.

Jules has a weird way of avoiding Nora, and Elliot seems tied up in the mysterious death of a girl he once dated, while Miss Greene is really an angel of death and Patch's ex-girlfriend (Dabria). Turns out that's a bad combo (shocking), and in a super-tense scene leading up to the climax, Dabria tries to kill Nora. You know what they say about a woman scorned…

Climax

Might as Well Jump

Things have been getting pretty crazy for a while, but when Elliot demands that Nora meet him, Vee, and Jules at the high school, it's drama to the max. Inside the school, Nora finds Vee and Elliot injured, and Jules reveals himself to be Chauncey, Patch's Nephil vassal, who has been trying to torment Nora and eventually kill her in order to get back at Patch for possessing his body every Cheshvan.

Despite Nora and Patch's efforts to fend Chauncey off, he chases Nora up to the rafters over the gym, gun in hand, and traps her. There's no way out, and as Jules says, "It makes no difference to me whether I shoot you or you fall to your death" (29.92). Oh goodie.

Chauncey's pretty cocky, but he's also dead wrong. As Nora says, "It does make a difference [….] I'm your descendant. If I sacrifice my blood, Patch will become human and you'll die. It's written in The Book of Enoch" (29.93). Oh snap, Chauncey. With that, Nora hurls herself from the rafter, showing what she's made of and finally settling once and for all how she feels about Patch, which has—despite all the stalking and violence and mind-infiltration—been the driving uncertainty throughout the whole book.

Falling Action

Who's Your Angel?

Nora must be dead, right? Wrong. Patch denies her sacrifice, which means Nora's soul returns to her body and Patch becomes her guardian angel. Meanwhile, Nora's sacrifice succeeded in killing Jules/Chauncey. Sweet.

As for the fallout, the police arrive at the school in time to rush Elliot to the hospital and save him. They rule Jules's death a tragic teen suicide. Vee is okay, too, and she apologizes to Nora for her friendship with Jules and Elliot. As for the damage done to Nora's farmhouse during Dabria's attack, Detectives Holstijic and Basso, as well as Nora's mother, buy her wacko explanation that a crazy chick posing as the school psychologist broke in demanding some unspecified thing from Nora. The detectives advise Mrs. Grey to get a security system for the future, just in case.

Resolution

Alarming Angel

The detectives suggest that Nora and her mom get an alarm system. Guess who the security company sends to install the alarm? It's Patch. Clever, considering he is now Nora's guardian angel. And now that he's her guardian angel, they have plenty of time for making out, which is how the book ends.