The World of Rae English
Black Lawrence Press, 9781937854393, 246pp.
Publication Date: January 15, 2014
About the Author
Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com
1. Rae English’s story unfolds in the straight-laced early 60’s—the era of Mad Men—where women were expected to be married and pretty—and guarded. How would Lena Dunham and Rae English fare in each other’s worlds? How much has changed between then and now and in what way?
2. What do Rae’s objections to her environment—to Iowa City—reveal about her character? Could her story take place in more wide-open spaces like a big city, New York or Chicago? Would that change her? Would she make more friends?
3. Rae’s world is strewn with secrets. Whose are they? Can you pinpoint some of the secrets, large or small? Which one or ones would you say launch the story? Represent turning points? Or are in other ways crucial to it?
4. Would Rae’s father have had an easier life if he had been her contemporary instead of her father?
5. Is there anyone in the book who is a true friend to Rae? Who might that be?