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Bel Canto
by Patchett, Ann
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1. What is the meaning of the title "Bel Canto?" What role does music play in this novel?

2. What are your impressions of Roxanne Coss? Do you understand the impact she has on the other hostages and on the terrorists?

3. Both Roxanne and Mr. Hosokawa try to take the blame for the hostage situation: Hosokawa because he believes he set the events in motion and Roxanne because she agreed to attend the event. Who do you think should take the 'blame' for this situation?

4. Why does Father Arguedas choose to stay with the hostages? What inspires him to make what may be a very dangerous decision?

5. Were you surprised that Roxanne and Gen married? What do you think brought them together?

6. This story is told by a narrator looking back on past events. Would this story have been different if it were told be someone at the time of the actual events? Perhaps Roxanne's diary?

Additional discussion questions from: Reading Group Guides
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