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Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions

Echoes of the Moon

Illness and Healing
1. How does the narrator handle the illnesses of her father and husband? What would you do / what have you done in similar circumstances?
2. Have you ever been seriously ill? What was most important to you at that time? Did your illness change the way you felt about people close to you?
3. Can you imagine what it might be like to be so ill as to be fully dependent on others? Was there anything in this book that made you think about terminal illness in a different way?
4. Some doctors seem more compassionate than others in this book. Discuss what kind of doctor you want when you are in need of a physician’s care.
Death and Dying
1. People have different reactions to a loved one who is dying. What did you discover about your own reactions when reading this book?
2. There are several descriptions of the moment of death. Compare and contrast them. How does the narrator’s experience differ each time, or does it?
3. Is there any way to be prepared for death, either your own or the death of a loved one? Did you learn anything in this book that affected the way you think about death?
Religious Ceremonies
1. Religious ceremonies use symbolism to reflect a belief. For example, in the traditional Jewish wedding ceremony the bride and groom drink wine from a single glass. Then the glass is intentionally broken. No one else will ever drink from that glass – a symbol that only these two people can fully experience their own marriage – it is not for anyone else to partake of it. How do the religious ceremonies in this book use symbolism? What truth or belief do the symbols reflect?
2. The narrator reacts to different religious ceremonies in different ways. How does her personal history affect the way she sees these ceremonies?
3. Have you ever chosen to leave a religious tradition?
4. Have you ever been curious about religious ceremonies different from your own? What did you learn?
5. What did you learn about ancient Greek rituals in this book? How do the old ways persist in modern religious practices? What connects the people of the ancient world with us today?
Rites of Passage
1. The narrator uses her husband’s life experience to develop a rite of passage for their children. Have you ever done the same? If not, is there something of your past that you would pass on to your children or friends to remind them of you?
2. A rite of passage indicates that a person is growing from one way of being into a new way of being. When have you experienced a rite of passage – and how did it make you feel?

1. Describe the women in this book. How are they similar? How are they different? How do they change?
2. Discuss the roles of Grandmother, Mother, Daughter, Sister as you see them here. How are they the same? How are they different? How do they overlap?
3. Discuss how the narrator’s personal experience informs her when dealing with her friend’s loss of her husband. What has changed for the narrator? How is this helpful to her friend?
Connecting with Animals
1. Have you ever confided in your dog, cat, bird, fish? How do animals comfort us?
2. Are you a dog person, a cat person, or perhaps a person who does not connect with pets? Discuss how you feel about having or not having a pet in your life.
Gifts and Burdens
1. How do inheritances figure in this book? Discuss the idea of fairness as it applies to the people who receive inheritances and others who do not receive the same treatment.
2. Sometimes a gift is a burden. For example, when someone gives you a treasured vase but it is not to your own taste, you are torn between displaying it and hiding it in the closet. Describe a time when you received a gift that required something of you. How did that work out?
Incredible Experiences
1. Have you ever had an experience that you couldn’t explain to anyone because it was too impossible to believe? What did you do about it?
2. Are there times when you later realized you had missed out on something because you weren’t ready to accept or understand a deep experience? What happened?

Echoes of the Moon
by Kathryn Clark

  • Publication Date: April 3, 2012
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace
  • ISBN-10: 1469904330
  • ISBN-13: 9781469904337