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Reader Resources for Freddy's War

  1. Originally this book had a different ending, in which Freddy died. What do you think might have been the reason for his death? (Accidental? Natural causes?) Why would the author have chosen the second ending instead of the original?
  2. If Freddy hadn’t appeared in Trout Creek after Mick’s death, would Joanna eventually have married Stan Novak, and could it have been successful? Why or why not?
  3. Among the secondary characters are Chris Stinson, Bertha Yellowquill, and Deaf Gilbert. Would this story have been as compelling without their roles? Why or why not?
  4. In what ways is Hope’s boyfriend, David Chu, important to this story? What about Stan Novak?
  5. Freddy’s welcome home party at Elite Eats and the violent death of Deaf Gilbert are two events that cause Freddy to suffer horrific flashbacks. Would his problem have been different in any way if his war had been Vietnam or Afghanistan?
  6. When Hope tells her story as a child, secondary relationships within the community are revealed with surprising insight. Given that she’s so young, how would you explain her insightful comments?
  7. Is Freddy’s growing affection for and dependence on Mick a natural side effect of war or does it go deeper than that? If Mick had survived, what might have happened to their friendship?
  8. Hope really believes she has seen her father in the woods. Is there a supernatural element to this story, and if so, does it have anything in common with other “ghost” stories?
  9. Hope and Freddy are both drawn to Vancouver’s Chinatown district. Discuss the reasons for this, and the eventual effects, if any, on Hope’s life.
  10. At no point in the book does Freddy profess love for Joanna. If Su Li had not reappeared in his life, would his relationship with Joanna have continued, or would the memory of Mick have interfered?
  11. Joanna’s friendship with Mary Leski seems like an odd match. What drew the two women together? Or was it just a friendship of convenience?
  12. Among the supporting characters in this book, does Yip or Serena have the greater influence in Freddy’s life, and why?
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