This Changes Everything (Ember) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
1. HISTORICAL events ranging from Earth dates 250 BCE to 2013 are discussed in TCE. Choose one or more and discuss the pertinent Chapters' perspectives on the events, asking: is this plausible? What are the implications were this depiction to be accurate?

2. RELIGIOUS concepts, theories, and practices of Jews, Christians and Buddhists are discussed and depicted in several Chapters; the lead character, Clara Branon, is a practicing Buddhist raised Jewish. How do your own religious education, studies, practices and/or upbringing influence your opinions and understandings of the concepts and themes in This Changes Everything (TCE)? What new ideas does TCE inspire you to consider and what has your consideration led you to think?

3. BIOLOGICAL changes to humans are important parts of the Transition period that the Many Worlds Collective imposes on Earthers. Men are disproportionately affected. So are those with sexual orientation or gender identities that are considered "minority" until the Transition's events prove them to be otherwise. What do you imagine would actually occur in your own life, your family members' and colleagues' lives, were these changes to be imposed right now?

4. COMMUNICATION enhancements and improvements, such as the interspecies translator, nicknamed the "fish," make it easy for humans to connect individually and as a group with other species on Earth as well as off-planet. How would your life change if you had a fish? With whom or what would you like to communicate first and why?

5. The MULTIVERSE on-again/off-again romantic/friendship relationship between Clara Branon and Epifanio Dang occurs throughout The Spanners Series in various timelines. In TCE, readers are left believing what version prevails? Why or why not do you believe Clara and Epifanio are together as lovers/partners/spouses? What is your preference for the outcome of their relationship and why? How do you relate personally to this love story?

6. "Re-set" is a concept introduced in TCE and utilized to explain both personal and global/political/social alterations, chances to re-start and re-do decisions, events, choices for Clara and for Earth. What exact point in your life or in the planet's life would you choose for a Re-set and why?

7. What do you think of Clara's lesson on Return and ReInvolvement? How do these depictions relate to your current beliefs about death, consciousness experiences after physical death, and reincarnation?

8. If you were going to recommend that someone read or not read TCE, what would be your reasons?

9. How much of TCE do you believe is fiction, how much is fact, and how do you know?  How does this affect your enjoyment of the novel?

10. Please review the annotated list of Volumes of the Spanners Series (Appendix A). What else would you like to see discussed or depicted in future Spanners Series Volumes, knowing that the time frame is the same (beginning roughly at the beginning of 2013 and ending roughly at the end of 2041, Clara's term as the Chief Communicator)? Who else would you like to have as a narrator? Please let Sally know your ideas! sallyember at yahoo
(Questions provided courtesy of the author.)

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