Life After Joe: Book Club Questions

I did this exercise with Room 702 and although I’m fairly certain no one read it, I thought I would try again.  I am nothing if not an optimist.  Also, for the first time in my publishing experience, I’ve included these questions at the end of the book – kind of a little bonus piece for my readers.  FYI – while these give some indication of themes and characters in the book, there are no true spoilers.

Shall we get started then?

1.  Given loss and grief are a universal experience, how did you find the portrayal of these emotions in the book?

2.  If you were in a similar situation (hypothetically), what would you do?  Would you react similarly to Liz?

3.  In your opinion, what was the most meaningful interaction Liz had during her journey on the road?

4.  With the introduction of Adrian back into Liz’s life, do you agree with her choices?  What would you have done?  Is Liz ‘allowed’ this happiness?

5.  At the end of the book, do you think Liz is still running from her loss?

6.  While Joe is unexpectedly taken away from Liz, do you think it is more difficult to copy with the sudden death of a family member, rather than having the chance to prepare yourself for their passing (as the case might be in a prolonged illness)?

7.  Hollywood time!  Who would you cast in the lead roles of Liz, Joe and Adrian?

8.  How different do you think the book would be if Liz and Joe had a child or children together?  Would Liz have been able to work through her grief in the same way?

9.  Liz knew that Joe wouldn’t mind being cremated after his death, have you thought about what will happen to you?  How do you want your memory to be honored?

10.  What do you think of Stephen’s actions?  Is he justified?  Did you think there was a possibility he and Liz could have made things work?

11.  Liz identified herself primarily as Joe’s wife and a teacher, to what extent are we defined by the people we know and love? How would we be different without them?  What impact did she have on other’s lives?

12.  Given her loss, does an awareness of mortality affect the attitudes and decisions of Liz?

13.  What’s your favorite kind of ice cream?

What are your thoughts?

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