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1 - How does the isolation of the setting contribute to the larger story? Would Richard still be a hero if he lived in a big city? Would Danni still have been so intrigued by outsiders?

2 - How does Danni’s home life contribute to her search for love and approval beyond her family? There is no lack of love between Danni and her father. Why do you think this was not enough?

3 - What is it about Audrey that initially intrigues Danni? And what ultimately pushes her away?

4 - Danni has many people in her life, yet finds something unfamiliar in her relationship with the hippies. What is it that Danni seeks from Meadow, specifically?

5 - Danni loses her virginity in a very unceremonious way. What were her true motivations? Will she regret this later?

6 - Examine Miriam’s response when she learns of her daughter’s molestation. How does her reaction serve her character?

7 - How do you feel about Richard’s decision to keep the rescue plan a secret? How does this choice support his ego rather than his family?

8 - Had Richard never attempted the rescue, would he still have lost his wife and daughter?



9 - How do you think Danni’s childhood experiences will enhance her new life in California? What might haunt her?

10 - What are some of the key moments that change Danni throughout the story?

11 - Examine the different roles that water plays in this story.

12 - Would you consider this a sad ending or a happy one?

13 - There are a number of purposeful repetitions in this book: red sky at morning, sailors take warning; no shoes, no need; kiss me kiss me kiss me; I shrug, and it’s an honest answer, and many more. Does this writing style detract from the story or contribute to it?

14 - Did the inclusion of the illustrated map impact your experience as a reader?

15 - One of the more remarkable biographical elements about the author is that she dropped out of high school after tenth grade. How does this knowledge impact your own impression of secondary and postsecondary education? Does a formal education stifle an artistic mind or expand it?


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