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1. What is The Leftovers about? Is this a religious, or anti-religious, book. Is it even about religion? If not...what is it about?
2. In what ways does the world change after the Sudden Departure. What affect does it have on those left behindboth devout Christians and those not so devout? How does the departure differ from the The Rapture? What about a possible parallel with the events of 9/11do you see any overtones of what the US went through in the aftermath of that national trauma?
3. Talk about the various groups that spring upthe Barefoot People, the Guilty Remnant. In what way are their formations a response to the Sudden Departure?
4. If the Sudden Departure occured in real life, today, how do you think our society would react? How would you, or your family, react if a loved one departed? Would it the disappearances be a good thing, if you're a Christian, or difficult thing to cope with?
5. Discuss Laura's decision to pull back from her budding relationship with Kevin. Is she justified in doing so, particularly in light of what she discovers about her husband? Is her pain too deeply felt, or might her sadness have abated had she started a new life with Kevin?
6. How well does Perrotta depict ordinary individuals dealing with loss? Are his characters realistic, believable? Or are they cartoonish and one-dimensional?
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