Dead and Breakfast Questions

Dead And Breakfast– Questions

Dead And Breakfast

DEAD AND BREAKFAST BOOK CLUB QUESTIONS

  1. 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 to reveal clues?
  1. Discuss the mystery aspect of the plotline. How effective is the author’s use of plot twists and red herrings? Were you able to predict certain things before they happened, or did the author keep you guessing until the end of the story?
  1. How important is the setting to the story? If applicable, discuss the time period in which the book is set. Does the author provide enough background information for you to understand the events in the story?
  1. What is the most important part of a mystery or thriller to each member of the group-characterization, action, dialogue, or setting? How does this book rate in each of these areas?
  1. Is this book part of a series? If so, did your group read the series in order? How has reading the books in order—or not reading them in order—affected your group’s enjoyment of the book? How does this book stack up against others in the series?
  1. Is the author equally invested in both character and plot? Or did the author put more effort into developing the story than in creating compelling and believable characters? Were the motivations of the characters believable, or did their actions feel like a means to further the plot?
  1. Agatha Christie wrote in her autobiography about her dislike of mysteries having a romantic subplot. Do you agree or disagree with her views? Did this book have an element of romance? If so, do you feel the love aspect enhanced or detracted from the story?
  1. Is your group familiar with the author’s previous works? If so, did this book live up to or exceed your expectations of the author?
  1. What do you know…and when do you know it? At what point in the book do you begin to piece together what happened?
  1. Good crime writers embed hidden clues, slipping them in casually, almost in passing. Did you pick them out, or were you…clueless? Once you’ve finished the book, go back to locate the clues hidden in plain sight. How skillful was the author in burying them?
  1. Good crime writers also tease us with red-herrings—false clues—to purposely lead us astray? Does your author try to throw you off track? If so, were you tripped up?
  1. Talk about the twists & turns—those surprising plot developments that throw everything you think you’ve figured out into disarray.
  2. Do they enhance the story, add complexity, and build suspense?
  3. Are they plausible or implausible?
  1. Does the author ratchet up the suspense? Did you find yourself anxious—quickly turning pages to learn what happened? A what point does the suspense start to build? Where does it climax…then perhaps start rising again?
  1. A good ending is essential in any mystery or crime thriller: it should ease up on tension, answer questions, and tidy up loose ends. Does the ending accomplish those goals?
  1. Point to passages in the book—ideas, descriptions, or dialogue—that you found interesting or revealing, that somehow struck you. What, if anything, made you stop and think? Or maybe even laugh.
  1. Talk about the characters, both good and bad. Describe their personalities and motivations. Are they fully developed and emotionally complex? Or are they flat, one-dimensional heroes and villains?
  1. What do you know…and when do you know it? At what point in the book do you begin to piece together what happened?
  1. Good crime writers embed hidden clues, slipping them in casually, almost in passing. Did you pick them out, or were you…clueless? Once you’ve finished the book, go back to locate the clues hidden in plain sight. How skillful was the author in burying them?
  1. Good crime writers also tease us with red-herrings—false clues—to purposely lead us astray? Does your author try to throw you off track? If so, were you tripped up?  What did you think you knew but found out you didn’t?
  1. Talk about the twists & turns—those surprising plot developments that throw everything you think you’ve figured out into disarray.
  2. Do they enhance the story, add complexity, and build suspense?
  3. Are they plausible or implausible?
  1. Does the author ratchet up the suspense? Did you find yourself anxious—quickly turning pages to learn what happened? A what point does the suspense start to build? Where does it climax…then perhaps start rising again?
  1. A good ending is essential in any mystery or crime thriller: it should ease up on tension, answer questions, and tidy up loose ends. Does the ending accomplish those goals? Can you envision a different or better ending?
  1. Point to passages in the book—ideas, descriptions, or dialogue—that you found interesting or revealing, that somehow struck you. What, if anything, made you stop and think? Or maybe even laugh.
  1. Overall, does the book satisfy? Does it live up to the standards of a good mystery story or romantic suspense? Or does it somehow fall short?
  1. Compare this book to other mystery, crime, or suspense thrillers that you’ve read. Consider other authors or other books in a series by the same author.

Please consider sharing your answers with the author via email at colleen@colleenmooney.com.  You might just get a surprise thank you in the mail!