1. Doro and Genia represent 2 very distinct types of mothers. Which do you relate to? Which was your own mother more like?
2. Some readers describe Tuck as the "one that got away." Is there someone like that from your past?
3. How did you feel about the recurring cat in the book? Do you think it symbolized anything?
4. Who was your favorite character and why?
5. Did your impression of JoAnna change over the course of the novel? If so, in what way?
6. Do you agree with Doro's decision to push JoAnna on to Chicago?
7. What does Chicago represent for JoAnna? Do you have a place like that?
8. JoAnna and Grace were best friends but opposites in many ways. Are you more of a Jo or more of a Grace?
9. Do you have an enduring friendship that started in childhood?
10. How did you feel about the elephant ears story? What do you think the elephant ears signify?
11. Close your eyes and picture your "place." (Everyone has one). For you, what place has "smells and tastes and sights so familiar your throat catches"?
1. What adjectives would you use to describe Maddy's faith? Doro's? Tom's?
2. Which character's faith do you relate most to and why?
3. When tragedy strikes, JoAnna asks "why." Can you think of a time in your own life when you've done that?
4. Do you think questioning God is a sign of faith or faithlessness?
5. Music was an important manifestation of Doro's faith. Is there something like that in your life?
6. Is the name Mt. Moriah symbolic to you and why?
7. If you grew up in a church community, how does it compare to Maddy's church?
8. In what ways could you relate to JoAnna's faith journey?