Skip to main content

Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions

The Lifeguards

1. Between Whitney, Annette and Liza, which character did you most relate to or empathize with? Did your perception of the characters change at all as you read? If so, how?

2. Parenthood is a significant theme throughout the book. Discuss each mother’s relationship with her son. How are their relationships different? Similar? Why do you think the author chose for her main characters to be mothers?

3. Discuss the themes of protection and sacrifice. How did you feel each character navigated these issues?

4. Which scene in the book stuck with you the most?

5. What did you think about the Detective’s storyline? Why do you think his story was included?

6. How do money, class and privilege play into this story?

7. THE LIFEGUARDS is written with alternating points of view. What did you think of this structural choice? Did it create more suspense for you?

8. The author specifically chose Austin as the setting. How did you feel that played into the plot? If you imagine you were to write a novel about where you live, what characteristics would you give your own setting?

9. Talk about the various real-life elements (message boards, texts, flyers, news bulletins) that the author incorporated. How did they influence your experience of this story?

10. Discuss the ending of the novel. Were you surprised to learn the truth?

The Lifeguards
by Amanda Eyre Ward

  • Publication Date: April 25, 2023
  • Genres: Fiction, Women's Fiction
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • ISBN-10: 0593159462
  • ISBN-13: 9780593159460