Wednesday, October 29, 2008


I want to come up with some book ideas for the December book...I'd like it to have something to do with the holidays...if we get two good ideas we'll do them for November and December. So, drop your ballots in the comment section - and hurry, the end of the month is Friday so we need to have the November book in place by then.

I also want to get the list of books at least through March up soon- so post your suggestions for them too.

So, a comment would look like this:

Nov, Dec: Skipping Christmas
New Year: Moby Dick



Hey - Blogger added this new thing a month or so ago - and it allows you to follow a blog. It makes it easy to see when the site has been updated, and it also lets me know that I am not the only Unseen Reader out there.
So what do I want? I want you to follow the blog (see the box on the right)...come on, what are you waiting for?!?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My Sister's Keeper Discussion

Here are some questions to spur discussion. I got these from HERE and AND HERE. There were more questions at these links too - if you're looking for more.

Reread the prologue to My Sister's Keeper. Who is speaking? Is that who you thought was speaking the first time you read it?

What is your opinion of Sara? With her life focused on saving Kate, she sometimes neglects her other children. Jesse is rapidly becoming a juvenile delinquent, and Anna is invisible -- a fact that the little girl knows only too well. What does this say about Sara's role as a mother? What would you have done in her shoes? Has she unwittingly forgotten Jesse and Anna, or do you think she has consciously chosen to neglect them -- either as an attempt to save a little energy for herself, or as some kind of punishment? Does Sara resent her other children for being healthy? Did you find yourself criticizing Sara, empathizing with her, or both?

Why does Jesse burn things? Is Jesse the opposite of his firefighter father or are they similar? In what ways?

During a conversation about Kate, Zanne tells Sara, "No one has to be a martyr 24/7." When she mistakenly hears the word "mother" not "martyr" and is corrected by Zanne, Sara smiles and asks, "Is there a difference?" In what ways does this moment provide insight into Sara's state of mind? Do you think it strange that she sees no difference between motherhood and martyrhood?

The epilogue talks about how the family moved on. How did they grieve? How did they survive? In what ways did Anna give life back to all of them, not just Kate?

Near the end of the novel, Anna describes "Ifspeak" -- the language that all children know, but abandon as they grow older -- remarking that "Kids think with their brains cracked wide open; becoming an adult, I've decided, is only a slow sewing shut." Do you believe this to be true? What might children teach the adults in this novel? Which adults need lessons most?

At one point, Campbell thinks to himself: "There are two reasons not to tell the truth -- because lying will get you what you want, and because lying will keep someone from getting hurt." With this kind of thinking, Campbell gives himself an amazingly wide berth; he effectively frees himself from speaking any semblance of the truth as long as the lie will somehow benefit himself or anyone else. Did it concern you that a lawyer would express an opinion like this? Do you think, by the end of the story, that Campbell still thinks this moral flexibility is okay? In what ways might this kind of thinking actually wind up hurting Campbell?