Welcome back to our monthly Book Clubbin’ feature where we provide some discussion questions for your next book club meeting. Now that the weather is starting to warm up (at least where we are), now is the perfect time to start booking some backyard book clubs, perfect for social distancing (if your area allows it, of course). Round up a group of pals, some snacks, your favorite sips, and that’s all you need to get the party started.
This month, we’ve chosen Educated by Tara Westover. This memoir has been making waves and topping charts since its debut back in 2018, and it’s still being talked about today.
Educated is a memoir from Tara Westover, where she recounts her days growing up in Idaho with her survivalist family. She touches on the impact of their isolation, her parents, her abusive brother, her other siblings, and ultimately how her journey to becoming educated transformed her. Narrated by Julia Whelan, this is an audio experience that you won’t want to pass up.
So, if you’ve been on the hunt for some thought-provoking book club questions that are sure to spark a great discussion about Educated, look no further. Keep reading for our full questions below. Beware— SPOILERS ahead.
1) Tara’s father plays a huge part in her story. Discuss her relationship with him and whether you felt that it changed throughout the book.
2) On the topic of parents, Tara’s mother does not believe her when she comes forward saying that her brother has been abusing her and her sister. Why do you think this is?
3) Why do you think Tara’s father is so strongly against getting a formal education? How does her brother, Tyler, leaving for school affect her?
4) How is Tara affected by her family’s expectations for what a woman should be and how she should act? How does this influence Tara’s life and the choices she makes?
5) Of the many shocking events of Tara’s life, one that sticks out particularly is during her first college class when she is unfamiliar with the term “holocaust.” Why is this moment important? How does this change her perception of herself, her family, and the world?
6) Tara introduces us to the mountain in Idaho next to where she and her family lived. Why do you think she refers back to this mountain several times throughout the book? How does the setting affect the Westover family? Would things have been different if they were located somewhere else?
7) Other than in school and classes, in what other parts of her life does Tara become educated? Why do you think Educated is the title of her book?
8) After listening to the whole story, where do you think this leaves Tara and her family? Can they still have a relationship? Can she ever go back?
9) How did you feel while listening to this audiobook? What kind of an impact did Tara’s story have on your life?
• Staff Pick: Educated by Tara Westover
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