Book Club Kits
by Waldman, Amy
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1. What do you think the purpose and message of a national memorial should be? Would you have voted for the Void or the Garden?
2. How did your reactions shift as Seans story unfolded, especially as he struggled with conflicting feelings after pulling Zahiras scarf? Is bigotry excusable if its coming from someone whose loved one was the victim of a horrific crime? What are the limits of a survivors rights?
3. Asmas memories of Inam are her private inheritance, and she must rely on translators to convey her messages in English. Did anyone in the novel have a truly accurate understanding of her suffering? How was her mourning experience different from Claires and Seans? What common emotions do all of the novels survivors share?
4. What would you have done in Paul Rubins situation? Was it courageous or insensitive of him to permit Mos submission to move forward?
5. A journalist, Amy Waldman had special insight into Alyssas world. What does the novel tell us about the role of the media (exploited by all parties involved) and the impact of a free press in the information age?
6. What makes fiction a powerful way to explore events that shaped our lives? What can a novel achieve that journalism and testimonials cant?
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