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ICE Breakers



There is a sense of urgency and tension in MacIntryre’s story-telling. Do you think this is reflective of the time of his writing (in the pandemic) and do you think all writers need to find a deeper connection to make their writing compelling?
Did you feel you discovered a different Colditz and how does it compare to other accounts and films?
There were many elaborate escape plans - did you have a favourite?
Were you aware of the competing tunnels? Did it remind you of ‘The Great Escape’ and other comparable war films?
What did you think of the class structure at Colditz and were you surprised that no orderly ever tried to escape?
MacIntrye described the castle as a 'microcosm of society'. Do you agree and what can we learn from their stories?



The novel moves back and forth in time between the two characters? Was this a helpful devise or would you have preferred a chronological story?
What did Werner and Marie-Laure have in common? How are they different?
This novel took Doerr 10 years to finish and at over 500 pages this is a lengthy novel. Do you think the story warranted this length?
What aspect of the novel did you enjoy the most? The hunt for the diamond? The detailed descriptions?
Had anyone in your book club been to Saint-Milo or similar citadels?
What makes this a compelling book club choice and how does it compare to your other favourite picks?
Doerr hopes the upcoming Netflix adaptation will be “a way to continue to remind people what kindness can do during times of intense trauma.” If you have seen the Netflix series do you think he has achieved this and how does the adaptation compare to his book?


Can you ever be qualified for motherhood?
What is the symbolism of the narrator and mother referring to herself as ‘soldier’ and her son as ‘sailor’
Have you read any other books on these early stages of motherhood and if so what makes this one stand out?
Did your book club find this book a difficult read and what unique qualities does Kilroy bring to her writing?
Can we ever appreciate the sacrifices motherhood means for a woman?
Do you think having children affects the relationship you have with your partner?
“You tore off your bib and cast it to the floor like a man quitting his job”; There are so many relatable quotes and moments in this book – which ones stood out for you and your book club?


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