Discussion Starts OCTOBER 21st

BACK COVER: 

The women who spent their childhood summers in a small southern town discover it harbors secrets as lush as the marshes that surround it...
 
Bonny Blankenship’s most treasured memories are of idyllic summers spent in Watersend, South Carolina, with her best friend, Lainey McKay. Amid the sand dunes and oak trees draped with Spanish moss, they swam and wished for happy-ever-afters, then escaped to the local bookshop to read and whisper in the glorious cool silence. Until the night that changed everything, the night that Lainey’s mother disappeared.

Now, in her early fifties, Bonny is desperate to clear her head after a tragic mistake threatens her career as an emergency room doctor, and her marriage crumbles around her. With her troubled teenage daughter, Piper, in tow, she goes back to the beloved river house, where she is soon joined by Lainey and her two young children. During lazy summer days and magical nights, they reunite with bookshop owner Mimi, who is tangled with the past and its mysteries. As the three women cling to a fragile peace, buried secrets and long ago loves return like the tide.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FROM THE BACK OF THE BOOK

1. Bonnie has wanted to be a doctor all her life. Is there a job or purpose you've been called to in your life? A profession you wish you'd started? (and if so, why not now?)

2. HOME. All of these characters are trying to identify and find "home" Is this a place? A house? A group of people? A feeling? A town? What does Home mean to you?

3. Are we "called" to certain vocations? Is there anything you were "mean to do"? Explain.

4. Another Discussion question from the book. "One of the very last lines is about Lainey's mother "We all do the very best we can."

Do you think she did the best she could? Is this true in your life or with those you love?

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Replies to This Discussion

BEFORE I answer this questions let me tell you that I had met this author and heard her speak about her new release Becoming Mrs. Lewis out this month. I read this heart-felt compassionate fascinating story. I had not read our current book club pick until this week. I thought it would have been just as good.

To be honest I wouldn't have picked it for us to read there were too many cuss words and inappropriate situations to mention. 

I will assure you that we will not be reading books like this in the future. This is the first time I put a book out there I hadn't read. My bad! Thank you for your patience with me as we all find our way to reading GREAT books!

FIRST QUESTION:

1. Bonnie has wanted to be a doctor all her life. Is there a job or purpose you've been called to in your life? A profession you wish you'd started? (and if so, why not now?)

Are we "called" to certain vocations? Is there anything you were "mean to do"? Explain.

My son has hand many surgeries and I've been so thankful for the men and woman that gave above and beyond expectations to help us through the medical maze. You can tell when someone is called to what they are doing.

Then again I remember a brain surgeon who didn't have any bedside manners but was brilliant at what he did. I guess he was called to what he did to. He was frustrated with the medical situation as much as we were. 

How can you tell if someone is called? and/ or has the passion to do what they do? What has been your experience. Do tell!

To answer the question, for me I didn't want to go to college so instead spent time at a school learning more business skills: shorthand, typing, etc to help with the jobs I had. After leaving high school I kept working at the two part time jobs, although I had no 4 hours of class everyday, it was enough with the studies. A few years into that I got married and later had my first child. That was enough for me then also=didn't work any longer. Was happy to be a wife and mother. I had returned to work a few times over the years but really like the other work I do now-I volunteer my time and expertise in knitting. I can't even tell you the satisfaction I get from one wearing one of the hats or scarves I've made-most without them knowing I made it.  Over the past 10 years I  have donated almost 20k hours to the local hospital making just hats and booties for newborns. Another 20k hours to navy and marine corps relief society making afghans and layettes for those going through budget program.  I also donate my time to other local charities for homeless, womens shelters, animal shelters, rotary club who help anybody in need.  It's so satisfying to me but it doesn't pay the bills but I am able to do that with the help of the computer. It also allows me to read hundreds of books every year to help a new author get noticed. I think I am helping and hope I am because it makes me feel good.  I think knitting is my calling in life, my mom also knit and taught me when I was about 10.  Started to quilt again now as the knitting is drying up for the winter months. 

Nora, the plot and characters were strong. I did enjoy this book. I appreciate your mention of the cuss words and other situations. I wondered about that. Thank you for explaining. I didn't purchase this one. I received it as an ebook through my library.

Hi, Sharon; I'm glad you were able to download this book from the library. Thanks for taking the time to read what I felt about this book. Thanks for sharing your opinions.

Now, in my sixties, I think I would have enjoyed working for a book publishing company, maybe in editing. I fell into the medical field when I was desperate for work. I was separated from my husband. My pediatrician suggested I interview for a job at their office. I had no experience. I learned everything on the job and continued for almost 20 years in different positions at several medical facilities. 

I think I could have begun at the bottom rung of a publishing company, too and learned my way up, if I had known an opportunity.

I love reading and writing, plus speaking. My gifts are pastoring, shepherding, and preaching. I've been able to use those abilities within my church. Those were very fulfilling roles, some of which I still do. I'm a true PK!

Thanks for sharing Sharon!

HOME. All of these characters are trying to identify and find "home" Is this a place? A house? A group of people? A feeling? A town? What does Home mean to you?

I think that many things going to create an atmosphere that gives us that sense of home, belonging. We can feel this about a home, church, job etc. To be it's a sense of being part of a community, that helps me and my family bloom and grow. 

Bonnie has wanted to be a doctor all her life. Is there a job or purpose you've been called to in your life? A profession you wish you'd started? (and if so, why not now?)

Are we "called" to certain vocations? Is there anything you were "mean to do"? Explain.

I felt like I wanted to be a teacher back in third grade, and in high school I really enjoyed French and English classes. After taking the long way around, I found myself in college at age 27 studying to be a teacher. I think it is a good profession, but wow! I had no idea about all of the time it eats up outside of work. To borrow Julie's phrase above, "it pays the bills," and I love language, but I I have very little time to do anything else but prepare for work.

I was writing books while I was at the university, and I wish I had attempted to get published. I am a reader by nature, and I also think I would be a good editor. Unfortunately I'm not sure I could be an editor living in a town of 5000 people. I would like to explore writing again...if I can ever find the time.

It's never too late to get a book published Becky!

I messed up and got the November book instead and then read Nora's warning and did not get the October book. Nonetheless, in answering the question about calling, I have struggled with this all of my life. I felt called to be in the medical profession. But based on some bad advice became an accountant but have never worked in this profession because I have worked in the medical profession instead in administration. I felt good about this but then, the Health System that I was working for went through a  big reorganization and I lost my job. When I attempted to go back into the medical profession by going back to school in the field of nutritional science and got another degree in that, I did not get a job so tried again as a Medical Assistant and didn't get a job either. Right now, I am working in a far different field (a nonprofit agency) so have a lot of confusion going on about what I felt I was called to do. 

Great to hear from you Sharen. Thanks for sharing!

Another Discussion question from the book. "One of the very last lines is about Lainey's mother "We all do the very best we can."

Do you think she did the best she could? Is this true in your life or with those you love?

In the case of Lainey's mother she was filled with guilt over the accident where she was driving drunk and hit a tree. She was freaked out by the fact her children were in the car. She could have seriously injured them. That on top of the fact that her husband threatened her. She left never to be found.

No one can make someone get well. What does it take for someone to stop whatever addictive behavior they are into and seek help. What does it take to get to someone's bottom. That was the bottom for Lainey's mom but it took years for her to get to a point where she forgave herself and could live life without substance abuse.

I think no one is perfect and we all do the best we can with the skill set we have and the support system or programs we have available to us. What do you think?

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Created by Phred St Laurent May 27, 2010 at 11:35pm. Last updated by Phred St Laurent May 31, 2010.

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