Discussion Guide for HIDDEN PIECES

Are you reading HIDDEN PIECES for a book club or online read-along. Here are some questions you might want to think about.

1. How would you describe Embry’s mental state at the beginning of the book? Give two examples from the text to explain why you feel the way you do.

2. What are some reasons that make Embry hesitant about her relationship with Luke?

3. What are some things that make her feel like Holden is a better fit for her?

4. How does Embry feel when she gets the first message from Unknown?

5. Unknown sends Embry anonymous messages because they are blackmailing her. What are some other reasons why someone might send an anonymous letter?

6. Can you find three examples from the book that show (not tell) that Embry and her mom are a lower-income family?

7. How does Embry’s financial status play into the decisions she makes throughout the book. Give at least two specific examples.

8. Who did you first suspect as being Unknown? When and why did you suspect that person?

9. Embry and Holden do their best to figure out who is blackmailing her on their own before involving the police. What are some of the things they do to try to discover Unknown’s identity?

10. In an earlier draft of the book, the first sentence was “High school friends aren’t real friends.” Do you think Embry and Julia are real friends? Why or why not? What does it mean to you for someone to be a real friend?

11. Do you have pieces of yourself that you hide away from most of the world like Embry? Why do you hide them? Can you think of three reasons people might keep secrets about themselves from even their closest friends?

12. Why do you think Unknown forced Embry to make the specific choices she was told to make? Defend your answer with examples from the book.

13. How do you deal with difficult choices? Do you trust your gut and go with your first instinct? Consult with friends? Make a list of pros and cons?

14. Throughout the book, Embry worries off and on about what she’s going to do after graduation. At the end of the story, her father tells her it’s best to go off to college with an open mind. Do you agree? Or do you think it’s better to start college already knowing what you want to major in and what career you want to have? Explain your answer.

15. How would you describe Embry’s mental state at the end of the book? Give two examples from the text to explain why you feel the way you do. What has she learned from her ordeal with Unknown?

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