Topics for Discussion

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1. The author provides an abundance of historical information in Adam of the Road. How important is this historical backdrop to the novel? Do you think that it enhances the plot or detracts from it? Give examples.

2. Could Adam's story have taken place in another time and place?

3. How does Nick act as a catalyst in the story? Does the part of the plot in which Jankin steals the dog seem realistic or contrived? Why or why not?

4. Many minstrel songs and stories are included in the novel. What is the purpose of their inclusion? Is it effective?

5. What techniques does Gray use to fully portray the thirteenth century? Why is her use of details that appeal to all five senses so important? Do these details sometimes serve symbolic purposes? Give examples.

6. Is the theme of Adam of the Road relevant to today's world?

7. Is Adam a well-developed character in the story? Does he change and mature during the course of the year? How?

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