Are you a member of a book club? Have you considered reading a Gideon Hawke Novel as a group? Here are some resources you might find useful:
General question pertinent to any of the Gideon Hawke novels.
Questions specific to particular books.
Contact information: how about having the author discuss his book with your group?
For the person who chose this book: What made you want to read it? What made you suggest it to the group for discussion? Did it live up to your expectations? Why or why not?
What was your initial reaction to the book? Did it hook you immediately, or take some time to get into?
What three words would you use to best describe this book?
What did you like best about this book?
What did you like least about this book?
What other books did this remind you of?
Do you think the story was plot-based or character driven?
Did you pick out any themes throughout the book?
Which characters in the book did you like best?
Which characters did you like least?
Which character did you relate to the most, and what was it about them that you connected with?
How did the characters change throughout the story? How did your opinion of them change?
Which character in the book would you most like to meet?
If you were making a movie of this book, who would you cast?
What was your favorite quote/passage from the book. Why did this stand out?
What other books by this author have you read? How did they compare to this book?
Would you read another book by this author? Why or why not?
What feelings did this book evoke for you?
How did the structure of the book affect the story?
What did you think of the book’s length? If it’s too long, what would you cut? If too short, what would you add?
How did you feel about the ending? What did you like, what did you not like, and what do you wish had been different?
What songs does this book make you think of? Create a book group playlist together!
If you got the chance to ask the author of this book one question, what would it be?
Which places in the book would you most like to visit?
What do you think of the book’s title? How does it relate to the book’s contents? What other title might you choose?
What do you think of the book’s cover? How well does it convey what the book is about? If the book has been published with different covers, which one do you like best?
What do you think the author’s purpose was in writing this book? What ideas was he or she trying to get across?
How original or unique was this book?
Did the book change your opinion or perspective about anything? Do you feel different now than you did before you read it?
If you could hear this same story from another person’s point of view, who would you choose?
Did this book seem realistic?
How well do you think the author built the world in the book?
Did the characters seem believable to you? Did they remind you of anyone?
Did the book’s pace seem too fast/too slow/just right?
Discuss the book’s structure. Does the author use any narrative devices like flashbacks or multiple voices in telling the story? How does this affect the story and your appreciation of the book? Do you think the author did a good job with it? How do you think it might have been different if another character was telling the story?
Talk about the author’s use of language/writing style. Have each member read his or her favorite passage out loud. (You might want to warn them ahead of time that they’ll be doing this so they’ll be prepared.) How does this particular passage relate to the story as a whole? Does it reveal anything specific about any of the characters or illuminate certain aspects of the story?
Talk about the time period in which the story is set. How well does the author convey the era? Did you have a sense of whether or not the author remained true to the events, social structures and political events of the time period?
What does this book teach you about the roles of men and women during the historical period of this novel?
Is this a time period that you knew a lot about before you read this book? If so, did you learn anything new? If not, did you come away with a greater understanding of what this particular time and place in history was actually like?
Is it difficult to keep our own, modern-day experiences from influencing the reading of a historical fiction tale? Can we imagine what life was really like for the characters within the context of the time period?
Compare this book to other works of historical fiction your group has read. Is it similar to any of them? Did you like it more or less than other books you’ve read? What do you think will be your lasting impression of the book?
What did you like or dislike about the book that hasn’t been discussed already? Were you glad you read this book? Would you recommend it to a friend? Do you want to read more work by this author?
This Glorious Cause
How were the times in which Gideon and Ruth were growing up similar or different from today?
Who was right? Discuss the conflicting arguments of Loyalists/Tories versus Patriots/Whigs.
To what do you attribute Gideon’s frequent physical illness and inability to sleep?
Times That Try Men’s Souls
Why was Andrew Johnston initially so hostile towards Moses Jones?
When all seemed hopeless, what motivated Gideon and his friends to stay with the army and not desert?
What were your feelings when Gideon considered taking his own life?
A Nest of Hornets
Describe Dan Scott’s motivations for pursuing the suspected spy; and then trying to dissuade Gideon from pursuing the spy.
Jealousy or Intuition: Discuss why you think Ruth is wary of Kate from the beginning.
Throughout the book Kate Scott gives a variety of explanations for her actions: describe what you think is the “real” Kate Scott.
A Constant Thunder
Ben Foster suggests plans for the future, after the war. Why do you think Gideon has never really given any thought to his post-war life?
Gideon, his friends, and even General Burgoyne, speak of Native Americans with a mix of awe and contempt. Why?
Did you find anything surprising about the role Ruth took on once she joined the march with the Rifle Corps? Do you think she is illustrative of the women who were active participants in the War of Independence?
Bob Krenzel is available to visit your Book Club!
Well, he may not be able to visit in person (not that he will not try) but he is very comfortable speaking to groups or individuals by video teleconference, Skype, FaceTime, or similar technologies.
If your group is interested in meeting the author, please check out our Contact Page.
Here are a few questions you might answer in your email to help Bob schedule and prepare for your visit:
When does your group meet?
Where does your group meet?
Are you looking for an in-person visit, teleconference, Video Chat, etc.?
How many members?
What are your group’s demographics? (gender, age, etc.)
Does your group have a theme? (history, young adult, fiction, etc.)
We look forward to hearing from you!