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Rules of Attraction (Ellis) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
Use our LitLovers Book Club Resources; they can help with discussions for any book:

How to Discuss a Book (helpful discussion tips)
Generic Discussion Questions—Fiction and Nonfiction
Read-Think-Talk (a guided reading chart)

Also consider these LitLovers talking points to help get a discussion started for The Rules of Attraction:

1. What kind of world does Ellis describe in The Rules of Attraction? Does he is glamorize it? Does he seem to approve or admire it...or something else? What do you think?

2. Is this the world of real college students? Would you consider the novel a work of "social psychology" as some have? Others call it a "dark comedy." What do you think (actually, what is a dark comedy)?

3. The story begins and ends, intentionally, half-way through a sentence. Why might Ellis have done so? What effect does it create?

4. Do you come to sympathize with, or like, any of these characters? If so, who—Lauren, Mary, Sean, Paul, or Victor? How would you describe them?

5. In what way do these students represent a culture of conspicuous consumption? How do they use (or abuse) their privilege?

6. What is at the heart of these young peoples' lives, anything? One character writes, "I am very tired. That's what I am. Tired of everything." What's the significance of that statement? Are they vacant individuals, or do they long for something underneath their shiny, rich exteriors.

7. What is the larger picture Ellis attempts to suss out for us in The Rules of Attraction?

(Questions by LitLovers. Please feel free to use them, online or off, with attribution. Thanks.)

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