The Great Alone Discussion Questions

BookSparks Book Club readers unite! It’s time to dive in to our first BookSparks Book Club pick of 2018, The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. Get the conversation going at your next book club gathering with these discussion questions.

Discussion Questions:

  • “Alaska doesn’t create character; it reveals it.” How did you see Alaska reveal the character of Leni in The Great Alone?
  • The novel follows Leni’s life in the years of 1974, 1978, and 1986. How does her perspective on her family change from 1974 to 1986?
  • How does the family’s dynamic change from 1974 to 1986?
  • Alaska is often described as a living being, how does the character of Alaska play a role in the novel?
  • How do the characters embody the untamed and unpredictable nature of Alaska?
  • What role does Large Marge, the former Washington, D.C., prosecutor and current owner of the community general store, play in Leni’s life?
  • The Allbright’s moved so often, that Leni attended five different schools in four years, why do you think escapism was always the goal but never the cure for Ernt?
  • The story takes place in the 70s, a time where America was troubled by Watergate, the Vietnam War, gas shortages, Ted Bundy and unemployment, how does Ernt’s emotional wounds reflect the emotional wounds of America?
  • In Leni’s college application, she writes on the importance of a books ability to transport her to foreign lands, “Only recently have I learned why I needed those faraway worlds.” Do you think imagining these faraway worlds is better than visiting them? How can you see that in the Allbright family’s desire for a fresh start?
  • How do you think the story would have changed if it wasn’t told from Leni’s point of view?
  • How would you compare The Great Alone to Kristin Hannah’s other books?
Stay tuned for more #BookSparksBookClub goodies and activities all month long!