Since Sidewalk Spot’s September, 2020 release, book clubs have invited me to participate in their discussions. I am grateful for their interest in Sidewalk Spots. During a recent online Zoom book club meeting, participants suggested that I post the questions I developed for Sidewalk Spots on Kathy Kronikles. They appear below. If you would like to share your responses to these questions or, if you have any questions you would like to add, please contact me.
Book Club Discussion Questions
1) When you were in elementary school, high school or even college, did you know or know of anyone like Marcus?
If so, was that person you?
If not, were you friends?How was that person like Marcus?
2) Do you have a hobby?
If so, to what extent do you focus on it?
Do you view your hobby differently than Marcus viewed his?
If so, how?
3) Marcus laments that his sidewalk spots give him more comfort than his religion.
Why do you think he has this point of view?
4) At least one reader described Marcus as a ‘hero,’ while another described him as a ‘blob,” and yet another described him as ‘lonely,’ how would you describe Marcus?
5) Have you ever wanted to shake things up?
When, why and how would you go about shaking things up?
6) One teacher who read the book found the chapters about Marcus’ elementary school teachers unbelievable yet another teacher who read the book found the depictions ‘right on’.
Were Marcus’ teachers unbelievable to you?
If not, did you have any school teachers with quirks?
What quirks did they have?
7) Have you stayed in touch with friends you made in elementary school?
If so, how do those friendships compare with Marcus’ friendships with Nobby, Rusty and Mary Ellen?
If not, have you met up with them later at a reunion, for example, and what was your reaction to them?
8) If you were casting Sidewalk Spots, who would you seek out to play the following parts in a movie version:
-Marcus Plato Hanlon?
-Rita Marie Hanlon, Marcus’ mother?
-Edna Louise Hanlon, Marcus’ aunt?
9) For many readers, the ending was a shock.
Without spoiling the ending for anyone who may not have finished the book, did it shock you?
If so, how did you think the book should have ended?
10) Who or what was your favorite character in the book?