Study Guide

The White Darkness What's Up With the Ending?

By Geraldine McCaughrean

What's Up With the Ending?

Packed with murder and melancholy, The White Darkness is a bleak sort of book. Still, it manages to end on a hopeful note. Yay.

Sym, recently rescued from her plight in Antarctica, is homeward bound and enjoying the attentions of Mike, a fellow traveler who she—and we, the readers—never really noticed until now. When he asks her on a date, Sym is obliged to turn him down (she's just fourteen, after all). Still, she doesn't respond with silence, disgust, or awkwardness, as she almost certainly would have at the beginning of the book. Instead, Sym flirts a little, and even manages to make a joke. "Keep in touch won't you?" she says. "I'm planning on being older in a year or two" (22.61). Looks like our girl is growing up, and becoming more confident in the process.

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