Warning! These questions are full of spoilers! You should only read them after reading the book for the first time (or if you don’t care about spoilers).
- Abby — Self-Abnegation in the Service of the Lord — and her siblings are all given “virtue” names. Discuss the significance of these names and what they tell us about the characters and the New Harmony cult.
- At what point does a religion become a cult? Do you think New Harmony was always a cult, or did it become a cult over time?
- Do you identify more with Steph or with Abby? Why?
- Why do you think Steph decides to take Abby with her to Seattle instead of dropping her off somewhere like a shelter or police station?
- Discuss Morgan’s role in the story. Is he more of an ally or antagonist to Abby?
- Were you surprised by anything about Abby’s first transformation into wolf form? Discuss.
- The book makes use of a real folk legend: the rougarou or loup-garou of Cajun Louisiana. Does knowing this affect your reaction to the story?
- Which of the book’s settings was most vivid or interesting to you? Why?
- After her first transformation, Abby becomes much more popular at school, and theorizes that it might be because of her violent tendencies. Do you think she’s right about that? Do you think she was right to react violently to Colin Ambrose?
- Do you think Abby makes the right choice about how to deal with George after she knows he’s a werewolf? What would you have done?
- How much responsibility do you think Abby bears for the following deaths: her sister Ash; the woman George kills; George; Father Wisdom.
- Christian symbolism makes heavy use of the concept of lambs, sheep, and shepherds. How do you think this affects Abby’s relationship to her wolf self?
- Was there any part of the book you particularly liked or disliked? Why?
- Do you think Father Wisdom is telling the truth about how he met Abby’s mother, and about her biological father? Why or why not?
- Did you enjoy this book more or less because of the werewolf element?
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