Reading Group Discussion Questions

I’ve had several requests recently for discussion questions for THE FIRE HORSE GIRL. Below is what I came up with. If you have any you had fun discussion in a classroom or at a book club, leave a comment below.

Discussion Group Questions for FIRE HORSE GIRL

  1. What did you expect when you started FIRE HORSE GIRL? Was the book what you expected or different? If different, in what way?
  2. What makes Jade Moon the right character to tell this story? Why not Sterling Promise? Or her father? Or Nushi? Or a narrator?
  3. Jade Moon loves stories. Why do you think she loves stories so much? Why doe you or people in general love stories? Do you have a story you loved to hear when you were younger?
  4. Can you imagine immigrating to a new country? What would be some of the challenges? What would you look forward to? What would scare you?
  1. What did you know about the 1920s before you read the book? Did you learn anything? Did anything about this piece of history surprise you?
  2. Would you like to live in the 1920s? In America or China? Why or why not?
  3. How important is the setting & time period to the story? How would it have played out differently in a different setting? What about a different time period?
  4. If you wrote a poem on Angel Island, what would it be about?
  5. Were the people on Angel Island mistreated or were officials and guards doing their jobs?
  6. Which character(s) did you identify with most and why?
  7. Did any of the characters remind you of yourself or someone you know? How?
  8. What is motivating the actions of the characters in the story? What do the secondary characters like Harry, Neil, Jade Moon’s father, and Sterling Promise want from Jade Moon? What does Jade Moon want from them? Who gets what they want and who doesn’t?
  9. How does the way people treat Jade Moon change when she gets to America? Does it change more because of the setting or more because she is pretending to be a boy?
  10. How does the way Jade Moon see herself, differ from how others see her? How do you see her? How much does how other people see us affect who we are?
  11. Jade Moon finds out that people respond to a Fire Horse Boy very differently than a Fire Horse Girl. Do you think there are still ways that girls and boys are treated differently?
  12. Were there any moments where you disagreed with the choices of any of the characters? What would you have done differently? What choices might have been the hardest to make? Why?
  13. What lengths would you go to for a dream?
  14. Many of these characters make different choices in order to survive? What lengths would you go to in order to survive? How far is too far? Which characters in THE FIRE HORSE GIRL go too far?
  15. How do you think the immigrant experience is different for parents compared to children?
  16. Who do you think changed the most in this book? The second most?
  17. Did this book make you think differently about immigration?
  18. Do you think the fact that the author was adopting two children from China during much of the writing of this novel influenced the story? How?
  19. What would be difficult if Jade Moon immigrated today? Would some of the challenges be the same? What might be different?
  20. What do you think will happen to Jade Moon next? Jade’s father? Sterling Promise? Harry? Neil?
  21. People accuse Jade Moon of being too bold, too stubborn. How do those traits hold her back? How do those traits help her?
  22. At the end of the book, what last piece of advice would you give Jade Moon? Sterling Promise? Harry?
  23. What other books that you have read could this one be compared to?

Published by

Kay Honeyman

I am a writer and teacher living in Dallas, TX. Check out my first novel, THE FIRE HORSE GIRL or pre-order my second novel INTERFERENCE (Oct. 2016)

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