Saving Faith-Book Study Questions for Homeschooling, Youth Groups, and Book Clubs

*Note to youth leaders and teachers: You can pick and choose the questions depending on the purpose of your instruction and the age group of your students/readers.

Character development:

Characters-specific: Determine which characters you wish to discuss, either from the list given or others- Gabriel, Faith, Christian, Nina, Adam, Miss Ruth, Tanner

How important was self-control in this novel?

Compare and contrast the characters Faith and Nina.

Explain the relationship transition between Faith and Christian.

Compare and contrast how Gabriel and Christian used Kung Fu.

In what ways did Gabriel struggle with his own advice?

Describe how Christian’s lack of control was destructive, specifically when it came to kung fu and his relationships with his father and Faith.

Describe the struggles of each of the following characters and how they relate to each other and the theme of the book as a whole- Faith, Gabriel, and Christian.

Why was Faith’s transition so difficult for Nina to endure?

Do you see any similarity between Faith’s struggle with her faith and Gabriel’s? Explain.

How do you feel about the return of Tanner Rose?

Which character was your favorite and why?

Which character do you feel was the strongest emotionally and why?

Characters-general:

Were you able to relate to any of the characters portrayed and in what way?

Were the characters believable?

Was there any experience in the novel that you feel you can apply to your own life experience?

Do you find this novel valuable? Explain your response.

Which character made the biggest transition, in your opinion?

Which character made the smallest transition, in your opinion?

Spirituality:

How is the verse Romans 12:2 reflected throughout this story?

In your opinion, how well does the author portray the presence of God in the everyday lives of the characters?

Is the author successful in presenting faith in a relevant and relatable way?

Give an example of each of the following Catholic values and explain where they were best presented in the novel: chastity, temperance, charity, diligence, patience, kindness, humility

 

Book Structure:

Discuss some of the narrative devices that the author uses? E.g. Flashbacks, foreshadowing, third person narration, plot twists, dialogue, and imagery. Do they work?

Do these narrative devices help move the story along or are they just distracting to the story?

Style:

What can you say about the author’s writing style?

Discuss the narrative style.

What are some of the noticeable themes in the book? How did the author develop these themes? Were these methods effective?

The Author:

How well did the author take you into the story?

Was the use of description effective?

Could you envision each character?

Could you envision the setting?

Did you find this novel enjoyable?

Would you recommend it to a friend? Explain your response.

Does this book prompt you to want to read more from this author?

 

Quotes:

Which character quote did you find most effective?

Which character quote do you feel is the defining message in the novel?

 

.PDF VERSION of book study for Saving Faith

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Classic Fiction of the Past Offer Lifelong Inspiration and Motivation

In the recent author profile by Steven McEvoy at Book Reviews and More and Catholic Dads Online, I was asked a few questions about my all-time favorite books.

  • If you could only recommend 10 books to a reader looking to be a well-rounded and whole person what books would you suggest?

I would offer up a variety of genres. Narrowing it down to 10, I’m pretty sure I’m going to forget some great books, but here goes- To begin with, and I hate to be cliché, but I have to suggest the Bible, beginning with the Gospels, C.S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia, The Great Divorce, and Mere Christianity, Milton’s Paradise Lost, J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Sr. Helen Prejean’s Dead Man Walking, Henry James’ The Beast in the Jungle, and Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.

  • Who were some of your favorite authors in your teen years who helped shape you?

I loved reading as a child and read a variety of genres, but the ones that had the most effect on me, as a person and a writer, were C.S. Lewis, Jane Austen, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Louisa May Alcott, Kenneth Grahame, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and The Brontë sisters.

Other titles I neglected to include in the interview were Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Johanna Spyri’s Heidi, and Lucy Maude Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables. I’m sure I’m still missing more great reads, but let’s move on.

In responding to these questions, I was reminded of how often I read as a child and how much I devoured each book. Little did I know back then that I’d build a deep connection with the classics.

You know a book’s great when it stays with you throughout your life.

These books were not only inspiring and motivating; they also challenged my subconscious-if not immediately then as a child, then at least in later years when I recalled them -when they were pertinent to a specific time or situation. I’m often prompted to think back on these novels from long ago. They were classics then, and have continued to maintain elite status, even as millions of new titles come on the market.

When I get the chance, I like to reread a favorite classic. It’s inspiring for me as an author. And it’s motivating as a reader. Chapters and scenes are randomly recalled throughout the pages of many. I just wish I was habituated to dog-earring and highlighting for future referencing and inspiration. Then again, a full reread is always worth the endeavor.

Lord, bless my words so that I glorify You in everything that I write.

Friends, feel free to share your favorite classics with me.

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