Book Club Kits
South of Superior
by Airgood, Ellen
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1. Throughout the novel, Madeline is looking for a sense of purpose, for something to guide her life. At the end of the novel, do you think shes found that sense of purpose? What do you think it is? How is it different from what she was expecting when she first came to McAllester?
2. Change is a major theme of the novel, and yet so much of what both Gladys and Madeline love about McAllester is how the town follows an older way of living. What kind of changes happen in the novel? Which character do you think is the most changed by the end?
3. Think about the Bensons. Do you think that they are wrong to want to improve their business? What could they have done to be more in keeping with the community? What does Madeline learn that they do not?
4. Values are important to all the characters in the novel. How are Madelines values different from Gladyss? Pauls? What do you think Randis values are? The Bensons? Think about yourself. Which character do you feel most similar to?
5. We never get to meet Joe Stone or learn why he gave Madeline away. What do you think his motivations were? Do you think he made the right choice? How did his giving Madeline away make her more like the Stones?
6. The novel ends on a note of anticipation. What do you think will happen to the characters after the book has ended? How do you think what Madeline has learned will help her handle future hardships?
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