Reading guide for Girls In Trouble by Caroline Leavitt

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

Girls In Trouble

by Caroline Leavitt

Girls In Trouble by Caroline Leavitt X
Girls In Trouble by Caroline Leavitt
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jan 2004, 368 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2005, 368 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Reading Guide Questions Print Excerpt

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!

  1. Abby makes a point of telling Sara what she calls "girls in trouble" stories about the awful times unmarried pregnant girls suffered in the 1950s. But who really are the "girls in trouble" in this book-and why?

  2. At one point in the novel, Sara drops off all the gifts she's bought and saved for Anne and leaves them, "like abandoned babies" at a church doorstep. She says this is a new script, one she's writing for herself. Anne, too, uses writing to reshape and understand her life. Why are stories--the ones we tell each other and the ones we tell ourselves--so important in this book? How are some of these stories misinterpreted?

  3. Why do you think Leavitt made Eva and George older parents? How does this figure into the themes of the novel?

  4. Danny, lying in bed, categorizes all the things he knows about his baby son. He says now he knows everything but "he's smart enough to know that soon he wouldn't." George also mentions how he feels Anne moving away. Nothing stays still or can be captured in time. How does this make Sara's loss more acute?

  5. At one point in the book, Jack says, "the only love that counts is the love you have for your child." Does the book bear this out?

  6. Leavitt clearly believes in the permanence of first love, but do you think Danny and Sara could have really been happy together?

  7. The definition of family in this book is ever changing. What makes a family? Which ones in the book are the most successful and why?

  8. "Loss is like a pie," Sara says. It may get smaller and gradually disappear but we're always hungry for it. How is this true for each character in the novel?

  9. Why do you think Leavitt explored open adoption by getting inside the minds of so many different and diverse characters?

  10. Leavitt has said in interviews that, despite the difficulties, she is very much pro open adoption. Why then, do you think she presented an open adoption situation that was less than ideal? What do you think she was trying to say about what could have, or should have been done to make this whole situation a happier one for everyone involved?


Book Club Report

Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of St. Martin's Griffin. 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!

Editor's Choice

  • 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 Jacket: A Spark of Light
    A Spark of Light
    by Jodi Picoult
    The central premise of A Spark of Light involves a gunman holding hostages within the confines of a ...

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

    The Kinship of Secrets
    by Eugenia Kim

    Two sisters grow up bound by family but separated by war; inspired by a true story.
    Reader Reviews

  • 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.