A Painted House Questions and Answers
by John Grisham

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Was Kathleen Chandler pregnant at end of the book, A Painted House?

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A Painted House is a novel by John Grisham that tells the story of the Chandler family. The story is told through the perspective of the youngest Chandler, Luke Chandler. The Chandlers are cotton farmers who struggle with a significant amount of debt. They work to harvest and sell their cotton with hopes of earning enough to meet their obligations. Throughout the harvest seasons numerous setbacks, including rain, make it impossible for the family to earn enough from their crop to pay back their debt. One of the symbols in the story, their unpainted house, signifies the Chandlers social status. More affluent people in the town live in homes that are painted.

Luke's mother, Kathleen, comes from a family with significantly more resources (she had always lived in a painted home before marrying her husband). She envisions a better life and always tells Luke that he will not be a farmer. She continuously urges her husband to consider moving and making a career change, assuring him they can have a better life, free of debt and the drudgery of working a cotton farm. Throughout the novel, as Luke is experiencing a coming of age, become considerably less naive, his family is also changing. His father is beginning to feel less attached to his identity as a cotton farmer and a member of the town and becomes willing to move and work in a different industry. By the end of the novel, Luke's mother becomes pregnant, in part symbolizing the possibility of a new beginning for the family.

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