Our debut novel, Depression Cookies, is a coming-of-age story about a corporate family maneuvering through love, loss and change. Told from the distinct vantage point of both authors, the reader gets to journey with Abby and Krista as they look for resolutions to life's complex questions. Throughout the book, the tension is broken by humor and many colorful characters.
Depression Cookies is a great choice for women's book clubs, and has the potential to promote lively discussions. Questions to guide your group through the book are provided, but we welcome comments and additional questions generated from your book clubs to be posted on the blog site. Thank you for reading Depression Cookies.
Please contact Tia Bach at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in hosting a Book Club and would like to speak to the authors via Skype or Teleconferencing. We'd love to be a part of your book club and hear your reviews and commentaries first hand.
Book Club Questions:
1. Looking at the cover and title of the book, did you feel drawn to it before opening to peek inside? Explain your initial reaction. What do depression cookies mean to the story?
2. Did the use of flashbacks confuse you? Did the authors overuse them or did they help explain the characters actions more fully?
3. The structure of the book was divided into three parts - Part I, Table Talk; Part II, Coming to the Table; and Part III, Back to the Table. Within the context of the book, there was a lot of cooking going on. Did you feel the title and book divisions adequately represented the storyline?
4. Abby stated, "Most people knew me as Bob's wife, the girls' mother, someone's sister, or someone's daughter. Often I would interject my name to hear it, to remind myself I had a separate identity from my family." Have you or someone you know ever expressed this? How do you retain identity as a mother and wife, especially if you are a stay-home mom?
5. Was Krista a believable teenager? Did you ever feel an "adult" voice creep in?
6. How would you describe Abby and Nadine's relationship? Did it change during the course of the novel? In the last scenes of Part II, was there a pivotal moment that marked the turn around? Offer your conclusions about this.
7. In this novel, food drew people together and tore them apart. Discuss this.
8. Depression Cookies is a multi-generational book. In each generation presented (Mary LaDora, Nadine, Abby and Krista) the women fall victim to a man. Explore this in your group. Why do girls/women succumb to this type of abuse?
9. The book is filled with life's tensions; however, the authors strategically used humor to give the reader a breather. What stood out as the best use of humor distraction? Was Chelsea a form of tension relief?
10. Bob is both a provider and leader of his family and a corporate man desperately wanting to succeed. Did you sense any tension in his loyalties?
11. There were several discussions in the book on class division and racial issues. What were they and how did they make you feel?
12. Abby and Krista dream about a Norman Rockwell type of life. While not realistic, it is a device used by women that often traps them into a life of depression and negativity. How did the characters handle the disappointments in life and move forward?
13. How is the issue of death handled? (Cindy's dad, Al and Nathaniel) How did it affect the people around them? How does our culture handle death?
14. Talk about the Aunties. Did you feel they were fleshed out adequately in the story? What part did the Aunties play in the lives of Abby's family? How did Nadine change as a result of their friendship and bonding?
15. The meeting of the "mothers" ended in disaster or did it? Discuss the scene and its implications for Abby and Krista, especially Krista. How did you feel about how both Abby and Krista dealt with the conflict?
16. Choice is a powerful theme in the book. Discuss several instances where choice was a determining factor. Reflect on this statement: In those moments when we are between friends, in those dark caverns of being alone, what will our choices be?
17. What was your reaction to Abby's relationship with Drake? At Al's funeral did you see a different side of him?
18. In Chapter 2 page 61, Krista refers to the idea of having to reinvent herself with each move. In what circumstances have you created different personas in order to fit in? How does this strengthen or debilitate the process of forming your true identity?