Questions (with the two most obvious ones first):

 

  1. Which story do you like most, and why?

  2. Which do you like least, and why?

  3.   Some stories are described as having an “unreliable narrator.” On the basis of Queen’s Grill, what would you say is meant by this? Which other stories would  you consider to have an “unreliable narrator”?

  4.   Some stories are told in the 1st person (using “I” or “we”), some in the 3rd (“he” or “she”) and one, as already noted, in the 2nd (“you”).  a) Identify which are told in which person, and say why you think the author made that choice? b) Similarly, some are told in the past tense, some in the present, some using both. Again, say why.

  5.   The author’s novel Sardinian Silver has been praised as having a sense of location. Identify the locations of these stories, whether by country, area, or city. 

  6.   While these stories are clearly not “autobiographical,” what would you say is the author’s general attitude towards a) religion and religious beliefs , b) war and violence, c) love, sex and relationships? Do you think there is too much emphasis on sex? Why do you think it is important for this author? (The collection was originally to be entitled In Love and War.)

  7. Which stories contain elements of satire? What do they satirize?

  8.   Most of the stories have a sad ending. Are there any that end happily, or at least optimistically?