ICE Breakers

CIRCUS OF WONDERS

BOOK OF THE MOMENT

Do you think circus performers in Victorian England felt as if they belonged to the public?
How did circus life both exploit and empower Nell? Why do you think she chose not to leave the circus when she had the chance?
Why do you think Jasper was so fixated with Dash?
Do you think Toby was loyal or weak?
How do you think Victorian circuses compare to the present day circus?
Macneal writes in the present tense – did you like this choice?
How do you think this novel compares with 'The Doll Factory'?

THE UNCOMMON READER

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Why does the Queen make such an interesting character for Bennett?
What other icons would make interesting studies for the author?
Do you think that a friendship such as the one struck up between Norman and the Queen could be a possibility?
The Queen tells Norman that she has a duty to read to find out what people are like? Do you consider reading in your book club a duty or a pleasure?
What novels have changed your opinion, provided valuable historical insights and discoveries and/or given you the most joy?

JUBILEE

Did this novel trigger your own memory of celebrating the Queen’s Silver Juibilee in 1977? Did you participate in a street party then or on other occasions? Or did you opt out?
Have you met up with old friends or sought them out?
The book lists popular songs around this time? What artists and singles capture this period for you?
Do you have photographs that hide secrets or interesting truths?
Do you think today’s challenges are different?

THE WILD CARD