1. Have you ever told a lie that grew beyond your control? What did you decide to do when the lie became more than you could handle?
2. Schroder is written as a confessional letter from Eric to his wife, Laura. Have you ever written a confession? About what and to whom?
3. In the novel, Eric tells his first lie when he is five years old. Do you remember your first lie or a time when you witnessed a young child lie? Why do you think you—or the child you witnessed—told this lie?
4. If you could change something about your family history, what would it be?
5. Which famous family might you pretend to be part of? Why?
6. Eric and Laura’s marriage began with a lie about Eric’s identity. How much of ourselves do we keep from our loved ones? Can omissions ultimately doom a relationship? Or is there room for secrets between spouses and in families?
7. Meadow is often the only voice of reason in the novel. What about a child’s mind allows Meadow to trust her father, but to be honest with him at the same time?
8. Were you ever worried for Meadow’s safety? If not, why not?
9. How does Eric’s immigrant status shape the way he sees the world—and the specific parts of his world, such as Laura, Meadow, and Albany?
10. Do you think Eric is mentally ill or just a confused man who doesn’t want to lose his daughter? How far would you go to hold on to someone you love?
11. Can someone who has made mistakes or done bad things in one part of their life still be a good parent?
12. Are you able to forgive the flaws in your own parents? Do you think Meadow will be able to?
(Questions issued by publisher.)
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