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Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions

The Newcomer

1. Letty and Tanya were both drawn from small-town life to big-city life. What do you think attracts people to cities? Do you think that feeling has changed over the course of the past few years? Which appeals more to you? Has that changed over time?

2. Letty and Tanya are sisters, but they have their issues. Still, they have a bond that makes them rely on each other even when tragedy occurs. Do you have a bond with anyone like that? Who is your go-to person?

3. In which ways was Tanya more naive than Letty? In which ways was Letty the naive one?

4. After Tanya’s death, Letty immediately went on the run. Do you agree, or disagree, with her actions? What would you have done?

5. Do you find hotels like The Murmuring Surf appealing? What is your ideal vacation spot? What is your ideal hideaway spot? Have you ever stayed in a hotel like The Murmuring Surf?

6. Does Maya seem like a typical four-year-old? Why or why not? What effect do you think she had on Letty?

7. What were your first impressions of Joe? Did you think he was likable? Suspicious? Attractive?

8. What do you think motivates someone like Evan Wingfield? Have you ever known anyone like him? Do you think he really wanted to have custody of Maya?

9. Discuss the cast of characters staying at the Murmuring Surf. Who did you enjoy the most? Have you ever known people to vacation at the same place year after year? What do you think is the appeal of such consistency?

10. Picture Letty, Joe and Maya 10 years from now. What do you picture them doing? Do you think they will be happy? What kind of teenager will Maya be? Do you think Letty and Joe will still live at the Murmuring Surf?

The Newcomer
by Mary Kay Andrews