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By Geoff Ryman

Discussed December 1999

Buy Was

Discussion Questions

  1. As is the case with several books this group has discussed previously, Was is told in a non-linear fashion with several viewpoint characters and with a non-chronological chapter order. Even within chapters, there are a number of flashbacks. How successful is the author in using these techniques?
  2. An important theme of the Wizard of Oz movie is "There's no place like home." Do Dorothy, Judy, or Jonathan ever feel at home?
  3. What sorts of parallels can be drawn between Dorothy and Judy?
  4. Does the reader end up believing that Aunty Em and Uncle Henry are evil people?
  5. Both Was and Wicked are homages to The Wizard of Oz from an adult perspective. What are the similarities and differences between these books?
  6. The author in the afterword says that all fiction, no matter how realistic, is fantasy. Is Was a fantasy in the more conventional sense?
  7. Where *did* Jonathan go when he disappeared in the end?
  8. A list of the 100 best gay novels published in the Advocate included Was. In what ways is Was a gay novel?

This page maintained by Rob Gates. Last updated March 10, 2001.

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