Saturday, September 29, 2018

Sept 2018: Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

Hollow CityBook: Hollow City (#2 Miss Peregrines)
Place: Emily's house
Date: Oct 4
Time: 7:30pm, discussion starts @8

Meat pies (Olive' favorite)
A favorite dish with honey, inspired by Hugh
Gypsy stew
Gypsy bread
Jacket potatoes (ch 8)
Stewed apples (from the Menagerie)
Nuts (from the carnival)

Discussion Questions:

  1. Did you like the book? Why/why not?
  2. Enoch tends to be the antagonist within the group. Do you think Enoch is pessimistic or realistic?Enoch repeatedly voices the worst-case scenario. Does doing so harm or hurt the group’s progress? Is it better to keep spirits high by sugarcoating the truth or to be completely honest about the situation and prepare to face it?
  3. Why do you think the hollows and wights chose to pose as Nazi soldiers? How does this element add to their malicious presence in the book?
  4. The children spend the entire book running away from hollows while trying to make their way to London. Did you think running was the best plan, or should they have tried to stand and fight, or simply hide?
  5. When the children had to leave the loop, Enoch packed reptile hearts, Hugh took the front doorknob, Horace took his “lucky pillow,” Fiona a jar of wormy garden dirt, and Millard had “striped his face with bomb-pulverized brick dust.” Jacob observed that “if what they kept and clung to seemed was all they had left of their home.” How did each of these items fit the character of each child? What would the others have taken? What would you have liked to keep from the house, or from your own home, if it were damaged? 
  6. The Gypsies live separately from the rest of society, much like the peculiar children. What other similarities do you notice between the Gypsies and the peculiars?
  7. The children’s stories of their past are mostly sad, especially Emma’s. How would you react if your friend or family member suddenly developed peculiar powers?
  8. What did you think about Jacob’s eventual decision to leave the peculiar children? What decision would you have made in his place?
  9. Hollow City ends with a spectacular cliffhanger. What do you think will happen in the next book? How will Jacob’s newly discovered powers affect the story? 
  10. Mr. White was appalled that the children called them monsters, and considered him and his kind more evolved than any other creatures on the planet. Why do evil creatures lie justify their actions to make themselves look better than they really are, especially to those who actually pursue good, like the children? How is he actually like many evil men throughout our world history, and what makes him blind to it? 
  11. Why was it so important for Emma “to prove to a stranger that we were good-hearted, when we knew ourselves to be”? Why did “the suggestion that...our natures were more complexly shaded, seemed to bother her”? Was it that way for all of the peculiars, or only some? And do normal people struggle with that as well? Why? 
  12. Would you recommend this book to others? If so, who?

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