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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Book Club Wed Apr 08 2009

Then We Came to the End Discussion Questions

Below are some sample questions for our April book, Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris. Feel free to comment below, and come join us on Monday, April 13, at The Book Cellar for our in-person discussion.

Why do think the book is titled Then We Came to the End?

What is the tone of the book? Is it more humorous or dramatic? How does Ferris balance the two?

Most of the novel is told in first person plural. Why do you think Ferris wrote the story this way? Does it work? Who is telling this story?

How would the novel be changed if Ferris had used a third person point-of-view?

What about a first person point-of-view? Which character would you like as a narrator? Who would be the most reliable narrator?

Ferris notably departs from the first person plural to describe Lynn Mason's state of mind on the eve of her surgery. Why does he change perspective here? Does it work?

Does this story have a hero? A villain?

How accurate or convincing is the description of the workplace? Could this novel have been set somewhere else?

How well do the characters communicate with one another?

What does the novel say about how well one person can know another? How well do we know the people with whom we spend the most time?

What are the themes of this book? What do you think Ferris is trying to say about work, co-workers, life?

 
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Sally Iberg / April 9, 2009 12:54 PM

I am loving this book! See you Monday. Happy 4th birthday GB book club!

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Book Club is the literary section of Gapers Block, covering Chicago's authors, poets and literary events. More...

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