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Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions

A Good Neighborhood (Audiobook)

written by Therese Anne Fowler, read by Adenrele Ojo

1. Early in the novel, Juniper considers: “What, she wondered, made a neighborhood good? To her parents, good seemed to mean there were mainly other people like themselves” (pg. 50). What do you think makes a “good” neighborhood, and is Oak Knoll one of them? As new houses are built in older, existing neighborhoods, do you think that changes the feel and culture of a place?

2. Do you view the Whitman family as genuinely Christian, or is religion primarily a tool for Julia and Brad? Can both things be true at the same time?

3. Of her new neighbors, Valerie acknowledges: “I basically judged them from the second the chain saws started, and that bothers me. I try to give everyone a chance, or how can I complain when people pre-judge me?” (pg. 25). What assumptions do these two families make about each other? Which of these assumptions do you consider to be racist or Classist?

4. Who should shoulder the blame for the chain of aggression between these neighbors? What actions could have been taken by either family to tame the tension?

5. The Greek chorus makes the listener a part of the story, and complicit in the action. How did that affect your listening? Who did you believe the “we” was in the book’s narration?

6. Did you recognize your teenage self in any of the young characters in this novel? Like Juniper and Xavier, did you also share a strong sense of desiring social justice?

7. What are your thoughts on the novel’s conclusion and Xavier’s choice? Do you think that justice was ultimately served?

A Good Neighborhood (Audiobook)
written by Therese Anne Fowler, read by Adenrele Ojo

  • Publication Date: March 10, 2020
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Audio: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Audio
  • ISBN-10: 1250260108
  • ISBN-13: 9781250260109