Dec 04 2007


The Book Without Words – Discussion #1

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This week, you were asked to explore the PLOT elements of the exposition including characters, setting, and conflict.

If you are not sure which part of the plot I’m speaking of, take a look at these PLOT DIAGRAMS (Diagram #1, Diagram #2, Diagram #3). It is in the exposition of any story that the core elements of that story are exposed (hence . . . EXPOSition): we are exposed to the characters, the main conflicts, and the setting.

Pick one of the following: A, B, or C from below.


A – The Setting Question
For help with understanding setting go to my page on it.
Novel Discussion Questions: Setting.

Consider the following questions:

  1. How does the author establish a sense of time, place and culture in this book?
  2. As you think about the different locations in the book – such as Fulworth, Thorston’s workroom, the apothecary’s shop, the churchyard – think about……
    1. the imagery you can envision
    2. the smells you imagine
    3. how the characters are dressed
    4. the sounds that come into your mind

QUESTION A - How does Avi deliver a crisp clear look at the world around Sybil, Odo, Alfric, and the others. Use details and information from the text to support your answer.


B – The Characterization Question
For help with understanding characterization go to my page on it.

Novel Discussion Questions: Characterization.

Consider the following questions:

  1. How does the author create the sense that the characters in the book could really exist?
  2. As you think about the different characters in the book – such as Sybil, Thorston, Odo, Alfric, and others – think about……
    1. the physical descriptions of the charcters
      1. how they’re dressed, etc.
    2. the speech, thoughts, and actions of characters

QUESTION B - How does Avi deliver a crisp clear look at the characters throughout the world in the book? I’d suggest you focus on one or two characters to explain how characters are characterized. Use details and information from the text to support your answer.


C – The Conflict(s) Question
For help with understanding plot and conflict go to my page on it.
Novel Discussion Questions: Plot.

Consider the following questions:

  1. How does the author establish any conflicts that exist in the book?
  2. As you think about the different internal and external conflicts in the book – such as those within characters, between characters, and between characters and the world around them think of . . .
    1. what loyalties are established
    2. trustworthiness of characters
    3. conflicts between characters and the environment (nature)

QUESTION C - How does Avi deliver a crisp clear look at the issues that characters wrestle with within themselves and between each other? Use details and information from the text to support your answer.



Don’t forget about the StudyHall (extra credit) – if there is anything you

  • don’t understand,
  • want help with,
  • do understand and want to help others with
  • or otherwise
  • . . . use the StudyHall.

When you are done getting your answer together, go to your classes discussion area, post your answer and let the discussion go where it will.Each class will discuss the entire book in one discussion area:

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