Here is a selection of questions for your book club to choose from.
1 – Should the British government have given more help to the International Brigade to support the Spanish against the fascist dictatorship?
2 – Class was an issue in those days and affected the relationship between Charlotte and Libby. Do you think it has changed in today’s world?
3 – Charlotte’s reason for going to help the Spanish people was partly because of her own experience of being bullied by her stepfather. Did she have any other motivations, and was she wise to take such a risk with her life?
4 – Libby was rather a complex and difficult character who made many mistakes in her life. Was her behaviour justified? And did you like or dislike her?
5 – Did any of the characters change, for better or worse, by the end of the book?
6 – Was it right for children to be given away to other families for political reasons? This was a policy that lasted for some time in Spain even after the war ended. How would you feel about losing your child that way?
7 – The way women were treated at that time was not good. They had a poor education and were not permitted to take a job without the permission of their father or husband. There were similar issues in the UK up to the end of WWII. Are women now treated as equals or are there still issues needing attention?
8 – Charlotte’s relationship with her stepfather was never good. Sophie’s relationship with Jo, her alleged stepmother, wasn’t easy either but did improve. Why do you think that was?
9 – Does the time-shift from past to present add more mystery to the story?
10 - Were these women right to remain silent and aim to be forgotten women?
Published by Lake Union Imprint 6 September, 2016
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