- How does Laurie react upon discovering a dead body on the lawn of her summer home? How would you react in a similar situation?
- What is Ryan’s response when Laurie tells him the dead body disappeared? Why is he focused on discrediting her account of events leading up to the disappearance?
- Do the local police take Laurie seriously? Why or why not?
- Discuss Laurie and Ryan’s marital relationship. How does their constant bickering affect their son?
- After the dead body turns up on Helga Beckerman’s driveway, describe how Laurie attempts to discover TG’s identity.
- Why is Ryan unsupportive of his wife’s investigation? Describe the feelings of guilt that permeate his life.
- What special favor does Laurie ask of Mitzy on Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar? Why?
- How does Ryan change upon returning from his trek to Champagne? Why?
- Why did Ryan initially leave Great Harvest? What does Ryan hope to achieve upon visiting his former employer? How do his expectations play out?
- When Brad, Jr. suspects Ryan has reported Great Harvest to the insurance board, how does he retaliate? How does this retaliation impact Ryan’s marital relationship?
- Discuss how the lives of Helga, Elizabeth, and Gerald are intertwined.
- Explain Arnold’s unrequited love for Laurie and how the napkin with the two addresses culminates in TG’s death.
- Describe the heartbreak and consequences of Griselda’s unrequited love for Gerald. How does she save Laurie’s life?
- Does Gerald learn of his son’s whereabouts before he kills himself? How does TG die?
- How have Laurie and Ryan changed by the end of the story?
Read The First Chapter