ICE Breakers

THE ENGLISH PATIENT  

Why do you think Hana devotes herself to look after the Englishman?

Why is the Englishman drawn to the desert and its landscape?

Hana adores the Englishman.  Do you think the Englishman is a likeable individual and would you trust him?

Do you find Kip’s loyalty to the British cause credible?

Do you think all four characters are misfits or victims/survivors of war?

Katherine’s death is tragic – how do you think her death affects The Englishman?

Do you think the simplicity of their lives in San Girolamo Villa enhances their story?

This book was awarded 2018 Golden Booker – do you agree it is a worthy winner?

SEVEN DAYS OF US

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

How many of the family dynamics rang true to you?

Could you relate to the strain in Andrew and Emma's relationship?

Could you understand how easy it is to maintain a wall of silence of suffering and acceptance over a period of time? 

Every character has their individual secret  - do you think a forced period of confinement would always uncover the truth?

Did you find this a heartwarming story?

BY GRAND CENTRAL STATION I SAT DOWN AND WEPT

WILD CARD

Love? Stuff and Nonsense!” my mother would say.  Do you think Elizabeth Smart feels isolated in her love?

Do you think this book is more like a work of art?

Can you relate to the vulnerability of the writer?

Do you imagine that the intensity of her love is reciprocated?

Do you think this kind of intense love can ever be practical, or the norm for most people?

Are you envious of the depth of Elizabeth’s feelings of love?

Do you think love is one of the primary driving forces of life?

MY SUNSHINE AWAY

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

This novel has been compared to Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird - do you agree?

Why do you think the author maintains the anonymity of the narrator? 

This book is about the power of memory and the consequences of keeping a childhood secret.  Do you think everyone has childhood secrets they would like to reveal but can't?

Why do you think the narrator was unable to comfort Lindy at the time?

Do you think Lindy forgave the narrator?  Do you think he forgave himself?

The author spends a section on the relationship between Baton Rouge and New Orleans - did you find this section interesting and do you think it added to the story?

Do you think the narrator ever really know Lindy?

Despite the serious subject matter, the novel never feels dark - would you agree and if so, how do you think the author achieves this?

THE HEART'S INVISIBLE FURIES

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Do feel it is important to be catholic or religious to empathise with Cyril’s mother? How did it resonate in your group and what stories did it ignite?

The book has been described as ‘the story of Ireland’. Do you think this it Boyne’s objective?  

What other themes struck you? Is this Boyne’s story? 

Did you enjoy his writing style and what other authors does it remind you of?  Have you read any other novels by Boyne such as The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Can you see book hitting the big screen and would you go and see it?  

AN AMERICAN MARRIAGE

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Do you think Roy and Celestial’s marriage would have survived if he hadn’t gone to prison?

Do you think it is inevitable that someone as young as Celestial would find it hard to wait and stay faithful, or do you think the fact she couldn’t shows their relationship was not strong enough to begin with?

If the roles were reversed, and Celestial had been the one in prison, do you think Roy would have waited for her?

Do you think this miscarriage of justice against African-Americans is prevalent in modern day America?

We are not given any information about the woman Roy is accused of raping.  What impact does this give to the story and what kind of woman do you imagine she is?

BERTA ISLA

THE WILD CARD

Do you think it believable that Tomas would have not have tried to prove his innocence in Oxford?

Do you think that Tomas could have got out of being a spy earlier on his life?

Were you surprised that Berta remained so self-contained about Tomas’s life choice?

Do you think people are still recruited at Oxford and Cambridge for espionage work today?

Do you think Marias is asking us if the sacrifice Bert and Isla made were worth it?

© Copyright 2019 thereadingden/All rights reserved
Privacy Policy