Gentle Readers: Please write me if you have read A Place in the World and tell me what you liked and didn’t like about it. I will gladly answer any questions you may have.
“A PLACE IN THE WORLD”
Ideas for Questions and Topics to Discuss (warning: may contain “spoilers’!)
1. What is the significance of the title beyond its literal meaning? Could you relate? What themes do you see?
2. Carmen and Alicia are separated by class, culture and education. What binds the two?
3. Discuss the different personalities of the Carvallo family.
4. What part does sexism play? Do you think it was cultural or just a part of the times? Does Alicia handle it as you would?
5. How much of the failure of the marriage is due to Jorge and Alicia and how much to external factors?
6. Did it bother you that Peter was an exploration geologist? Discuss his conflict about loving his job, but worrying about the consequences of a big find.
7. One reviewer wrote “the rainforest (cloud forest) itself is the book’s most detailed and compelling character”. How did you feel about this?
8. Describe your response to the novels’ ending. Do you feel Alicia made the right decision or did you think she had to give up too much? Would you rather she had struggled on her own?
9. The novel could have ended with her disappearing on a Colombian road – as happened to many at that time. How would you have felt about that ending?
10. Was your perception of Colombia marred or enhanced by the book? Tourism is on the rebound as guerrilla activity and other dangers have subsided. Would you consider visiting?