Reading Guide Questions
Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
- In the prologue, Nan makes a promise to Bernadette. What are other examples of promises made throughout the novel?
- Catherine broke a social taboo by having an affair with a married man. If she had lived in the year 2014 rather than in 1900, how might she be treated?
- Catherine is viewed as the outsider by her neighbors in rural Galveston. What could she have done to make the adjustment easier? What could Oscar have done to help her? Nan?
- Texas has long been a place where people go to escape their pasts and to start anew. Was Oscar able to break free from his past? Was Catherine?
- Nan is also haunted by the past. Discuss the turning point(s) when she realizes she is ready to look to the future.
- What is Andre's importance to the story?
- Music plays an important role in the novel. Discuss the lyrics of the songs and why you think the author selected those particular songs.
- Most readers are aware that a hurricane will hit Galveston. What were your expectations about the storm? How did you expect the novel to end?
Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of Skyhorse Publishing.
Any page references refer to a USA edition of the book, usually the trade paperback version, and may vary in other editions.