Join staff for a book discussion of Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris. Books are available for checkout near the Service Desk.
About the Book
“2 children for sale.” The sign is a last resort. It sits on a farmhouse porch in 1931, but could be found anywhere in an era of breadlines, back runs, and broken dreams. It could have been written by any mother facing impossible choices.
For struggling reporter Ellis Reed, the gut-wrenching scene evokes memories of his family’s dark past. He snaps a photograph of the children, not meant for publication. But when it leads to his big break, the consequences are more devastating than he ever imagined.
At the paper, Lillian Palmer is haunted by her role in all that happened. She is far too familiar with the heartbreak of children deemed unwanted. As the bonds of motherhood are tested, she and Ellis must decide how much they are willing to risk to mend a fractured family.
Inspired by an actual newspaper photograph that stunned the nation, Sold on a Monday is a powerful novel of love, redemption, and the unexpected paths that bring us home.
About the Author
Kristina McMorris is a 'New York Times' and 'USA Today' bestselling author. Inspired by true personal and historical accounts, her works of fiction have garnered more than twenty national literary awards and include five novels and two novellas.
Prior to her writing career, she hosted weekly television shows since age nine and was named one of Portland's "40 Under 40" by the 'Business Journal.'
Kristina is a frequent guest speaker and workshop presenter and holds a bachelor of science degree in international marketing from Pepperdine University. She lives with her husband and two sons in Oregon.
Book Discussion Questions
1. Which character became your favorite? Who did you like least? How did your opinions of the major characters change throughout the story?
2. In the prologue, the narrator reflects upon "the interwoven paths that had delivered each of us here. Every step a domino essential to knocking over the next." After reading the book, do you agree with that view? Can you pinpoint a single decision in your own life that spurred a series of significant unforeseen effects?
3. At the Royal, Max Trevino (who also appears in McMorris' novel "The Edge of Lost") makes a difficult decision regarding his sister. Do you agree with his choice? Do you believe he intended to stick with the plan he proposed? If you've also read "The Edge of Lost," how different was your impression of Max in that book?
4. Early in the story, Lily carries a burden of shame and guilt regarding her son, due to societal norms and her own dark secret. Would you have felt the same in her shoes? Would you, or Lily, feel differently in present times?
5. Like many parents during the Great Depression, Geraldine Dillard faces a near-impossible choice when Alfred Millstone appears at her house with an offer. In her position, would you have made the same decision?
6. People deal with grief in various, sometimes extreme, ways. How do you feel about the manner in which Sylvia Millstone and Ellis' father, Jim Reed, came to grips with the loss of a child? Do you sympathize with them equally? What are your thoughts on Alfred Millstone's choices and actions?
7. Throughout the story, Lily struggles to balance motherhood and work. Do you believe her career ambitions were solely for the sake of her son's future? If not, would she ever admit this to herself or another person? Have these considerations changed in today's society?
8. Lily and Ellis break several laws while on their mission to find and rescue Calvin. Do you agree or disagree with their actions? Would you have done anything differently in their situation?
9. How do you think Ruby and Calvin were affected by the whole of their experiences in the story? How would these elements likely shape who they'd become as adults, or as parents themselves?
10. Where do you envision the characters soon after the story ends? Where do you think they would be in five years?
Background information and discussion questions courtesy of the publisher.