1.Is this your first time reading this? If so, what do you think so far? If not, are you liking this reread so far?
Don’t laugh, but I always get this book mixed up with North and South by John Jakes even though they are completely different! Otherwise, this is my first time reading the novel and I’m enjoying it, although I find Margaret to be a bit uptight.
2.Have you seen the BBC mini-series? Is the book anything like you expected it to be?
3.Why do you think Margaret refused Henry? He seems like such a nice chap.
Henry’s a real catch! In my opinion, Margaret didn’t see Henry as her equal or that they had any common ground.
4.What are your first impressions of Mr. Thornton?
Right now, I like Mr. Thornton, but he has a bit of a chip on his shoulder. He a self-made man and successful, but seems a bit insecure about his background.
5.Why is Margaret so indifferent to Mr. Thornton, but she can make friends with the Higgins? They are both northern people and have different customs.
I feel that Margaret senses Mr. Thornton wants her to be impressed by his success. I think she looks down on Mr. Thornton as much she as looks down on Milton. With the Higgins she feels sorry for their poverty whereas Mr. Thornton has no financial difficulties.
6.Compare the two moms we’ve seen in the story.
Mrs. Hale and Mrs. Thornton are both drama queens and completely self-absorbed. I think they don’t get along because they are actually so much alike.
7.What differences are you seeing so far between the north and the south?
It seems there’s prejudice on both sides with the north being depicted as a lower class region with factories and an absence of natural beauty. Northerners are hard workers and rough around the edges. Southerners are viewed as a leisure class who only know how to play.
8.Do you think Mr. Hale was justified in leaving the church and his position?
I feel that Mr. Hale was in his rights to leave the church if he questioned his faith. What really bothered me was that he made Margaret tell her mother about his resignation and that they were moving to Milton. I can’t respect him because of his feebleness.
9.What are your feelings on Frederick’s situation?
I think I may need to re-read this section. I don’t remember what the big deal was about! He couldn’t come back to England? … LOL!
10.What are your thoughts on the master and worker relationship?
I find the discussion of the rise of the working class in North and South very interesting because the industrial revolution greatly changed the country both socially and economically. The book seems to be set right on the cusp of all these changes.