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ICE Breakers



Can you remember this period of Irish history and if so how does this add to your reading of this novel? If you are not familiar with The Troubles, how did this story of living through them impact you?
Michael is not perfect. He has clearly had other affairs, drinks and smokes too much. How do these flaws add to the story?
What do your book club think of Cushla and her decision making?
Cushla is clearly the most educated in her family, having been to university – why therefore do you think her family want her to marry and settle down when she is so young?
What does this book tell you about the constraints of class and religion during this period?
This book contains many layers – do you agree?
What does Jerry add to the story?



How many in your book club have read a Graham Greene novel before? And how does ‘Our Man in Havana’ compare?
Graham Greene worked for MI6. Do you think this spy caper is drawn from any of his own experiences or informed intel on how assignments were corrupted? And do you think he was making fun of MI6?
Described by Greene as one of his ‘entertainments’ to what extent did this novel succeed in achieving this and what aspects did you enjoy the most?
Wormold is an unlikely spy? Or is he?
Would you have liked any characters developed further such as Milly or Wormold’s love interest Beatrice?
Is the spy world a more dangerous and darker place today or is it more anonymous and protected by the advancements of technology and communication?


Can you imagine a future of living on moon colonies and taking vacations on earth to visit family?
This is a short book, almost a novella – yet it packs in so much. How do you think Emily St. John Mandel achieves this?
When we first meet Gaspery-Jacques Roberts he is a waster figure, lacking drive or purpose. What changes?
Were you surprised at some of the questions Olive was asked on her book tour?
Whilst on tour Olive gives a lecture about post-apocalyptic literature – what is the significance of this? Do you think everyone’s reaction to the pandemic reaching earth reflects our own response to Covid19 – we knew it was coming yet we almost didn’t believe it?
How important is to like the characters in this book?
The author takes us to the 20th/21st/23rd and 25th centuries. Which was your favourite and why?
How would you describe the genre of this book? - Science fiction/time travel/novella?


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