Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Chapter 14 Question

Clearly, Fang has had an unhappy childhood. Does this justify his experimenting with so many different drugs? Do you know anyone who has done this type of drug experimentation; if so, what were his/her results?

Chapter 12 Question

Have you ever been in a situation like Luke’s: in a closed-in space with someone you really like? If so, how did you handle it? If not, what do you think you would have done in Luke’s situation?

Chapter 12 Question

Why do you think Proulx (the author) included the scene with Fang not being able to breathe and “the harelipped dude”? She didn’t need these specific things to create the meeting between Faith and Luke at the concert.

Chapter 11 Question

Chapter 11 – Why do you think Luke told the truck driver, a stranger, about his gift of prophecy and not those close to him, such as his parents or friends?

Chapter 10 Question

Chapter 10 – Why do you think Fang stopped climbing, began jumping and eventually replaced both by getting stoned regularly instead?

Monday, November 9, 2009

General Question 9

What do you think of Proulx’s treatment of the media in her novel – the hounding of Luke, Luke’s friends and Luke’s parents; the coverage of the raid in McCreary Park? Do you think this treatment is justified?

Question -- Chapter 9

Luke recalls Stan “making it all look so goddamn effortless.” Have you ever felt this way about another person and consequently felt yourself to be inadequate? If so, describe those feelings.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

General Question 8

Do you believe in fate; for instance, was fate the reason Luke was unable to save Mr. Bernoffski?

Question -- Chapter 8

In the final paragraph of the chapter, Luke says that those teenagers of the “male variety” would say “everything was cool” even if it wasn’t. Can you explain his statement? Why does he limit his statement to males?

General Question 7

Many novels appeal to a more specific audience. Would you agree that this novel appeals to adolescents, parents and teachers equally? Why or why not?

Chapter 7 Question

What is it about adolescents, do you think, that made the 200 “Slokum Sucks” t-shirts sell out in one hour? Why do you think the older generation (for example, the principal, Luke’s mother) were unhappy about that?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

General Question 6

Do you find it difficult to believe that a forty-something Canadian woman from Ottawa so convincingly created the voice of a teenage boy from a small town in the States? Why or why not?

Chapter 6 Question

Luke says “anger – the only emotion I was really good at.” How many adolescents to you think feel this way and why?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

General Question 5

What do you think of Proulx’s inclusion of pop culture references (for example, The Wizard of Oz, That ‘70s Show, the Chili Peppers, Pokemon cards, Nirvana, the Foo Fighters, Tommy Hilfiger)? How might these references affect future readers, say 10 or 15 years from now? Consider her reference to the movie O Brother, Where Art Thou? that plays a large and important role in Chapter 16.

Chapter 5 Question

Do you think Luke’s treatment of his mother, who wants Luke to talk to his uncle, is justified? Why or why not?

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

General Question 4

Part I: Why do you think Proulx included Uncle Mick who has the same gift of prophecy as Luke?
Part II: Why do you think Luke is so reluctant to speak with him?

Chapter 4 Question

Did you see the same humour as Luke did in the situation that resulted from Luke’s father trying to escape the procession to Stan’s gravesite, or do you think it just made the situation more desperate?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

General Question 3

Joanne Proulx is Canadian. Why do you think she set her story in a small American town instead of a small Canadian town?

Chapter 3 Question

Why do you think Luke was so angry at Mr. Bernoffski for dying? After all, Luke did what he could to prevent Bernoffski’s death.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

General Question 2

Would the story be different if it were set in a larger city such as New York or Toronto instead of the fictional small town of Stokum, Michigan?

Chapter 2 Question

Can you explain the different approaches to the media attention by Slater, Fang and Luke?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

General Question

Do you think some readers might be offended by teenagers reading this book due to its language and references to drug use? If so, who or what types of people? Is their offence justified? If yes, why? If not, why not?

Chapter 1 Question

Chapter 1 – How do you think you would handle what Luke went through when his prophecy about Stan came true?

Algonquin Reads Virtual Book Club

Welcome to Algonquin College’s virtual book club! To get the discussion rolling, each week two Anthem of a Reluctant Prophet questions will be posted.

This week, the first question is based on Chapter 1 and the second is a general question about the Algonquin Reads book. Next week a question about Chapter 2 and another general question will be posted. This will go on until the end of the winter semester (the end of April, 2010). Then, next year we’ll start again with a new book.

Everyone at Algonquin is invited to join in the discussions about Joanne Proulx’s engaging novel. Please express your opinion, add to someone else’s, and/or agree or disagree with others’ viewpoints.

We are all looking forward to these exciting discussions!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Stay Tuned!!

Stay tuned for discussion questions. Within the next few days, I will post two discussion questions. I will post 1 new discussion question each week for several weeks, so that Algonquinites can share their feelings about Proulx's discussion-worthy Anthem of a Reluctant Prophet.

I am looking forward to sharing thoughts about our book.


Friday, May 8, 2009

Read the book!

For the inaugural year of the Algonquin Reads! Project, the committee has chosen a book by a local Ottawa author, Joanne Proulx. The book is called Anthem of a Reluctant Prophet.

It is a Globe and Mail Top 100 Selection, and is published by Penguin Canada. It is a compelling, well written tale from the perspective of a seventeen year old who suddenly finds he can forsee someone's death. It is suspenseful, funny, and thought-provoking.

Read the book and get involved in a number of events to be hosted around Algonquin College, from September 2009 to April 2010!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Welcome to Algonquin Reads!

This is the blog for the Algonquin Reads project at Algonquin College, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.