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Discussion Guide

For book groups, classes, or those who wish to engage more personally and deeply with this memoir.

  • Which memories shared in this book touched you the most? Did they spark memories of your own? What did you find particularly moving?

  • Share a favorite quote from the book. Why did this quote stand out?

  • Were there any stories or journal entries of Ben’s were particularly moving for you, or that you connected with? What struck you in these writings?

  • Were there particular pieces of art that moved you? Which ones?

  • Listening to Ben's music, were there particular songs that moved you? Which ones?

  • Consider the book’s title. How does it relate to the book’s contents?

  • What was the most challenging or difficult part of the book for you to read or understand? How did you overcome it?

  • What aspects of the author’s story could you most relate to?

  • Consider the outside sources and references in this book.  Did you find them helpful and credible?

  • Why do you think the author wanted to tell their story? What do you think is the main thing they wanted you to come away from reading the book?

  • What was the most surprising or shocking thing you learned from the book? How did it make you feel?

  • What was the most memorable or impactful story, anecdote, or example in the book? Why did it stand out to you?

  • What surprised you the most about the book?


  • How thought-provoking did you find the book?  Did it confirm or contradict any of your assumptions or expectations? Did the book change your opinion about anything, or did you learn something new from it?


  • What are some of the limitations or biases of the book? How does it reflect the author’s background, perspective, or agenda?

  • What questions do you still have after reading this book? What would you like to learn more about? 

  • One of the major concerns of this memoir is inherited or intergenerational trauma. What are some ways that this plays out? Have you seen this in the larger world, or in your own life?

  • The author writes, "Language is in the body before there are words to express it.” Do you relate to this? Disagree with it? What does this mean to you?

  • What are some other major thematic concerns of the book? How are they explored in the text?

  • Consider the structure of the memoir. What effect does the non-linear structure have? Why might it have been constructed in this way? How did the author’s choice of how to frame and organize the book impact its effectiveness for you?

  • To create this memoir, Chagit Deitz went through her son’s old writings, journals, art, and music. For her, this was a way of reckoning with what had happened, and a way to find healing. Can you imagine doing this in your own life? What might that evoke for you?

  • If you could ask the author one question about this book, what would it be?

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