Howdy Bookclub Buddies!
We’ve prepped some questions to accompany each book, and get you thinking about the stories, your reactions to characters, what you think the future holds for our favourite Rivers End residents and more. Hopefully you’ve got a few friends you can form a bookclub with. If not, get yourself on my newsletter list PRONTO.
(Hint: it’s possible that in 2018 I will host an online Rivers End bookclub once a month for peeps like me who don’t have a bookclub in their local area…CLICK HERE. Seriously.) Then you’ll get notified in January when the doors open for signups…
xo CJ Hunt
Silver Bells (The MacAllisters, #1)
- Silver Bells is our first introduction to the town of Rivers End. What makes it so attractive to Jenna? What do you think makes it an ideal setting for new romance?
- Both Isaac and Jenna have suffered wounds inflicted by close family members—Isaac from his wife and Jenna from her brother. Do you think this makes them more or less likely to get together?
- What makes Isaac a great dad?
- How does the presence of Isaac’s daughter Sara raise the stakes in his budding relationship with Jenna?
- What is special about Jenna’s relationship with Sara? What is Jenna able to bring to Isaac’s and Sara’s little family?
- Out of all the secondary characters introduced in the book, who do you most want to see get their own romance?
- Jenna and Isaac’s love story unfolds in the relative isolation of a cabin at the Big River Lodge. Do you think secluded settings are more conducive love affairs? How does the cabin itself help move the story along?
- It’s lust at first sight for Jenna and Isaac. What qualities do you think play a part in immediate attraction?
- What was it like to read a Christmas story about a woman who hates Christmas? How do you think Jenna’s attitude towards the season is reflected in the progress of her new romance?
- The book ends with the promise of Isaac and Jenna’s first date. Their relationship progressed backwards. Do you think these two would have gotten together under more conventional circumstances?
Tipsy (The MacAllisters, #2)
- When Shannon first kisses Lucas, is it the alcohol talking?
- At the beginning of the story, there are a lot of reasons why Shannon and Lucas shouldn’t be together. Why do you think they fall for each other anyway?
- Do you think Shannon was too hard on Lucas for (initially) keeping the secret of his sister’s infidelity?
- In what ways does Lucas challenge Shannon’s critical impression of him?
- We get a good glimpse of Tracy in this story—Tracy, the all-knowing bartender without a love story of her own. What kind of partner do you think would be best for her?
- For a long time, Lucas views Shannon as “off-limits” due to their tangled family dynamic. Do you think that it’s a good idea for siblings to marry into the same family, or do you too feel it should be off-limits?
- Is Shannon right to keep her involvement with Lucas a secret, even when it hurts his feelings?
- How is Sara an unwitting matchmaker in the story?
- Lucas is torn between his loyalty to his sister and his respect and admiration for Shannon and her family. Do you think he manages this balancing act effectively? Would you do the same if you were him?
The List (The O’Donnells, #1)
- How do you think Selina’s upbringing shaped her attitude to love and romance—for good or ill?
- What do you think of George? Do you think he was a good man? Did Selina forgive him too easily? How would you deal with Selina’s conundrum?
- What did you think of the author’s inclusion of the storyline involving Marcie and the kids? How did it affect your impressions of Connor, Selina, and Mr. Peterman?
- Why do you think Connor and Marcie never made it as a couple despite their affection for one another? Can you guess what draws Marcie to Patrick, and vice versa?
- In some ways, The List is about compulsions and addictions: Connor and George are both alcoholics, and George is a hoarder.But how do the other characters in the story manage their own compulsions? Do you think all compulsive behaviour is bad, or can it also be a force for good?
- Do you agree with Mr. Peterman’s assessment of Rivers End? How might the town have changed since he was a young man? Do you think there would be challenges for a half-Chinese Canadian living in a small town, then and now?
- What do you think is Uncle Tony’s story?
- Were you surprised to learn about Connor’s past as an alcoholic and celebrity millionaire? Did it change the way you felt about him? Did you believe him when he told Selina that he simply hadn’t found a good moment to tell her?
- What challenges do you think Selina and Connor will face in their future as a couple?
- Do you think Selina and Connor are a match made in heaven? Why or why not?
Maybe (The Martinez Family, #1)
- Would you rather spend Valentine’s Day at a fancy restaurant or a karaoke bar?
- Both Lucie and Daniel have had a lifetime of putting the wishes of their families before their own. They have both lost loved ones. So what do they see in each other that is new or different?
- How is Sheena a great friend to Lucie in this book? Do you think she does the right thing when Lucie’s wedding plans begin to fall apart? As a best friend, what would you do in a similar situation?
- Do you think Lucie made the right decision to run away from her wedding and become involved with Daniel so quickly?
- If Daniel was your bartender, what cocktail would you want him to make?
- Who is the antagonist in Lucie’s story? In other words, who is the person most responsible for standing in the way of her realizing her dreams?
- Ashton does some not-very-nice things in this story. Do you believe that he and Lucie really loved each other?
- If Lucie and Daniel hadn’t met at karaoke night, do you think Lucie would have gone through with the wedding?
- What do you think the professional future holds for Daniel and Lucie? What would you like to see them do?
- What did this story teach you about love?
Trick or Treat:
- How is Mona both similar and different from stereotypical representations of witches?
- Garrett isn’t your standard heartthrob hero. What do you think makes him an attractive character (or not)? What not-traditionally-sexy traits do you find appealing in a potential partner?
- Not many couples can say that unconsciousness brought them together. Have you had any unusual or entertaining “meet-cutes” in your life, with either a lover or a friend?
- We don’t hear Garrett’s perspective on this story, only Mona’s. What do you want to know most about him?
- How do Mona’s supernatural abilities allow her to grieve her mother in a unique way? On the other hand, despite these abilities, how is her experience the same as that for anyone who has lost a loved one?
- After reading Mona’s story, what do you think are some of the downsides to being a witch in the world of Rivers End?
- What are your favourite Halloween night activities?
- Oona could be one’s role model or worst nightmare: she’s gorgeous, curvy, flirtatious, and confident. At first glance, it seems like she has it all. What was it that made you truly root for her as a character?
- Carol has been trying to set up her brother, Sam, with eligible women for months. Why do you think she never tried to hook him up with Oona? Rivers End, after all, is a small town.
- Oona has always been reluctant to show her townhouse to her boyfriends. Judging by their respective lodgings, what do you think “home” means to Oona and Sam?
- When Oona meets Sam’s parents, her Gift allows her to see that their words of welcome are sincere. Do you think such a Gift would be a blessing or a curse?
- Sam is a planner, methodical and cautious, while Oona is spontaneous, instinctual, and more carefree. How do you think their attitudes would clash or complement each other in their role as parents?
- Sometimes one’s weakness turns out to be a great strength. What are Sam and Oona’s weaknesses?
- Oona contains a special scene involving only Sam and his mother. How did this interaction affect your view of Sam as a character and a romantic hero?
- In this story, we learn that Rivers End has its own home base for local witches, the local shop A Touch of Magic. How do you think this support system, appearing briefly in the book, affects Oona’s feelings and decisions, especially after she discovers she’s pregnant?
- Based on the traits and talents of both her parents, what Gift(s) do you predict Sam and Oona’s daughter will have?
- If you had your own magical bakery, what would you put in the cookies?