Book clubs—whether online or in person—are amazing, and they are a great way to connect with the book you’ve just read. You can gain a deeper understanding and stronger emotional connection to the themes in the book through discussion, but reading it and then discussing it with other book lovers will often open your eyes to things you’ve missed. Some of my favorite novels I’ve dissected that way, and I love them all the more because I’ve studied them with fellow book lovers.
Sometimes, though, it’s hard to figure out where to begin those talks. Coffee’s great, but it doesn’t always fuel you with ideas! A lot of times, my best group discussions started with a simple question or two. To help you out, I’m going to each week give you a list of Book Club questions for one of my books, so if your group decides to tackle one of my books, the hardest part—the questions—is already done for you!
If you’ve never been in a book club, I recommend the experience at least once, because you get to hear perspectives on a book that you might never have thought yourself. You won’t always agree with your fellow readers, but they will make you think—which is part of why we read anyway!
Without further ado, this week’s book is Tangled Web. Before the questions, here’s the book blurb as a refresher:
Katie Logan has had a secret crush on her best friend Johnny Church since high school, but he’s never looked at her the same way. So when Johnny—now a famous rock-and-roll guitarist—comes home to visit, Katie can’t bring herself to tell him she’s engaged to be married. She should have, though, because she soon discovers that maybe the attraction is mutual…
Oh! One last thing…if you have not read the book, you probably shouldn’t read the questions because some of them will contain spoilers.
Two themes in the book are infidelity and inevitability. Cheating is always a difficult issue to grapple with, but in Tangled Web, there is the added idea that, perhaps, Johnny and Katie making love is inevitable. Some love stories feel that way, as though the characters belong together, and it is just a matter of time before they realize and accept it. Did it feel as though Johnny and Katie’s slip was meant to happen? What could they have done to avoid it? How could Katie have better handled telling her fiancé Grant?
If Katie had told Johnny about Grant before he kissed her, do you think he would have held himself back? Why didn’t Katie tell Johnny?
A lot of readers dislike the way the story is told, with past and present intermingled. Did you find that distracting or did the history of the characters enrich their present? Would the story have been okay without the history?
Would other characters in the story have hurt or helped it? For example, how would Katie’s mother change the dynamic of the story?
There has been a gap of time in between parts one and two. What kinds of changes do Katie and Johnny undergo in the interim?
Whether or not you agree with what Katie and Johnny did, do their characters seem real and believable?
Does any character in the book remind you of yourself?
If you could change the ending, what would you do differently?
If you could ask Jade one question about this book, what would it be?
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Friends, if you do use these questions for a book club reading, I’d love to know how it went. If you all came up with other questions, I’d love to hear them! Happy reading!