Issues raised in the book

  1. Domestic abuse and the law
  2. Alzheimer’s and suicide
  3. Money and politics
  4. Middle-aged stepmothers and teen-aged stepdaughters


Questions related to the characters and plot

1. How do Phoenix and Annalynn’s attitudes differ about how to handle the items Achilles found at the accident scene? What does that reveal about the old friends’ life experiences?

2. Why did Phoenix organize the Coping After Crime Foundation? How does she feel about running it?

3. What does Annalynn insist on knowing before going after the nomination? What does that tell you about her character?

4. Do you think Phoenix can build a good relationship with Kaysi? Why or why not?

5. What motivates the three aspiring candidates—Annalynn, Bernadine, and Jerrald? Do they remind you of any politicians for whom you have (or haven’t) voted?

6. What choices does Phoenix consider in dealing with the abusive husband? Why did she choose the one she did? Would you have made the same choice? 

7. Why do you think the congressman’s car crashed? If you were the captain, would you treat his death as an accident, a suicide, or a homicide?