In Boy, Snow, Bird, compare Boy’s relationship with Arturo and her relationship with Charlie. How are they similar? How are they different?

In Boy, Snow, Bird, Boy appears to have a conflicting relationship with both Arturo and Charlie. She can’t tell Arturo she loves him. She does tell Charlie she loves him, yet she’s “appalled” that she does. Both men seem to want to control her. Arturo makes suggestive chain jewelry for her. Charlie won’t stop showing up in her life. One notable difference is that, despite how it makes her feel, Boy seems to genuinely love Charlie.

Expert Answers

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Boy and Arturo’s relationship is rather icy and detached. It doesn’t seem like Boy loves Arturo or possesses passionate feelings for him. Right before Arturo proposes, he asks Boy if she loves him. She doesn’t answer. He proposes anyway. When Boy agrees, Arturo doesn’t believe her. He asks, “Are you sure?”

That moment illustrates their rather awkward, tentative connection. Their remote relationship might be because of Arturo’s daughter. Both seem more focused on Snow than on one another.

As for Charlie and Boy, their relationship has some awkward elements as well. She tells how Charlie and her stare at one another without blinking while she tries to figure out “what it was that was separating us and whether he or I could make it disappear.” As with Arturo, there appears to be something that’s obstructing or getting in the way of a deeper connection.

Despite that moment, Boy does seem closer to Charlie. While Boy doesn’t tell Arturo she loves him, she does tell Charlie that she loves him. She mentions her love for him throughout the story. Unlike Arturo, Boy seems to feel a visceral attraction to Charlie, even if she’s “appalled” to admit it. At one point, she describes Charlie as “tenacious.”

On a slightly different note, it might be interesting to think about the differences between Charlie’s and Arturo’s relationship to Boy in terms of gender. You could contend Charlie possesses traits normally tied to masculinity, and Arturo contains elements normally linked to femininity. Remember, Arturo makes jewelry, and he has to be something of a mother to Snow. Meanwhile, Charlie is something like a Prince Charming. He tries to “rescue” Boy. Of course, Boy declines his offer.

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