What is the meaning of the last chapter title "Beautiful and True" in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close?

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litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The last chapter is titled “Beautiful and True” because Oskar discovers the truth, and finds beauty in his life again.

This is a very meaningful chapter.  Oskar learns that his mother and Ron met in a support group for people who lost loved ones.  This gives him a completely different view of Ron and their relationship.  He realizes that Ron is not trying to replace his father.

The reader also learns that the “renter” is really his grandfather.  He lost contact with Oskar’s father, and the letters he wrote are letters he never got to send.

“I’m Oskar’s grandfather.  I don’t speak.  I’m sorry…. He doesn’t know. (ch 17, p. 278)

The book has been about Oskar trying to deal with his grief, and put his life back together.  When he sees his mother crying and learns that he called her and said he was on his way home so that she would not worry, he realizes that his mother is trying to put the pieces of her life back together again.  There is beauty in coming to terms with grief and moving on with your life, even though it is a long and difficult journey to get there.

Read the study guide:
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

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