Reading guide for The UnAmericans by Molly Antopol

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The UnAmericans

Stories

by Molly Antopol

The UnAmericans by Molly Antopol X
The UnAmericans by Molly Antopol
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Feb 2014, 272 pages
    Paperback:
    Oct 2014, 272 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Poornima Apte

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reading Guide Questions Print Excerpt

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!

  • Many of the characters in The UnAmericans travel or change locations during the course of their story. How does this seem to affect who they are?
  • What beliefs do these characters cling to, and how do they struggle with letting go?
  • The age-old themes of East versus West and Old World versus New World are big ones in The UnAmericans. How do these themes relate to the characters' ideas about religion, or about family, or about growing old?
  • How does the history of a given character's home country agree with or depart from his or her own history or destiny?
  • Think about the idea of home. What does the word mean to these characters?
  • Why might the author have titled her collection of stories The UnAmericans? Consider the settings, religious affiliations, political beliefs, and other similar factors when coming up with your answer.
  • Considering the rich interior lives of these characters, think about how our beliefs about others conflict with reality. How do we create other people in our minds?
  • What do these stories have to say about the place of religion—and especially Judaism—in the contemporary world?
  • Many of these characters are trying to get away from something. Talk about the theme of escape in these stories.
  • How do these characters lie to each other, and to themselves, in order to construct alternate "truths" that they find more comforting?
  • Communism plays a big part in this collection. How has the fall of the Iron Curtain affected the emotional lives of these characters?
  • What is the place of authority, whether parental or governmental, in the lives of these characters?
  • Art of various forms—painting, film, writing—plays a big part these stories. What do these stories have to say about the role of art in the immigrant experience?


Book Club Report

Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of W.W. Norton & Company. Any page references refer to a USA edition of the book, usually the trade paperback version, and may vary in other editions.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book:
  McCarthyism

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: In Extremis
    In Extremis
    by Lindsey Hilsum
    International journalist Marie Colvin pushed the limits in her work and her personal life. Widely ...
  • Book Jacket: Vita Nostra
    Vita Nostra
    by Marina and Sergey Dyachenko
    Vita Nostra by Ukrainian authors Sergey and Marina Dyachenko is one of those novels that defies ...
  • Book Jacket: And The Ocean Was Our Sky
    And The Ocean Was Our Sky
    by Patrick Ness
    Patrick Ness has developed a reputation for experimental literature executed well, and his latest, ...
  • Book Jacket: Let It Bang
    Let It Bang
    by RJ Young
    Every interracial love story is an exercise in complications. R.J. Young and Lizzie Stafford's ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Unsheltered
by Barbara Kingsolver

A timely novel that explores the human capacity for resiliency and compassion.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    A Ladder to the Sky
    by John Boyne

    A seductive, unputdownable psychodrama following one brilliant, ruthless man.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Severance

Severance by Ling Ma

An offbeat, wryly funny, apocalyptic satire that is featured on more than twenty 2018 "Must Read" lists!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

I Ain't O U T F L S

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.