The Chosen starts off with a flashback, stating how ironic it is that both Danny and Reuven didn't know that they lived so close together, and didn't know each other for their younger childhood. We are also informed that they are in the city of Brooklyn, during the great depression and the Holocaust.
Let us make a Jewish Homeland at Palestine!!
The two boys finally meet for the first time during a baseball game, only for Reuven to get hurt in the eye form a ball hit by Danny. He has to go to the hospital, and that's when the two boys become friends after visits from Danny.
Once they become friends, each boy has someone to talk to, and confess about their secret wishes for their life. Danny wants to be a psychologist and not a Rabbi, while Reuven wants to be a Rabbi, but his father encourages him to be a mathematician. Their conflicting ideals with their fathers is the main conflict throughout the book.
After the president dies, an argument arises of whether to make a Jewish holy state, creating the Zionists and the Anti-Zionists. David Malter is for the holy state, so he talks about it at speeches and rallies. Upon hearing this Reb Saunders, who is against the holy state, forbids Danny and Reuven from talking to each other, since of their conflicting ideals.
After 2 years of separation Reb Saunders allows them that they can be friends again, now that the holy land debate is over. Reb Saunders tells Danny and Reuven that he has known about Danny wanting to go to college, and not wanting to become the family's rabbi. It is shown during their conversation that Reuven is being used as a buffer between Danny and his father, and how the Reb uses him to confront Danny.