Book Club, Brontë, Literature

Wide Sargasso Sea Book Club Questions

The Brontë Buddies’ Book Club meets via Zoom every month. We read works by and about the Brontës as well as Brontë-inspired fiction. If anyone would like to join us, then head over to our Facebook page for further details.

Below are some questions about Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys which you’re welcome to use in your own clubs. The novel is a prequel to Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre.

1. What is the novel about? The relationship between Rochester and Antoinette, madness, patriarchy, colonialism, race, the clash of cultures? Or something else?

2. Looking at the different cover designs, what would you expect the book to be about? Do any of these covers capture the essence of the novel for you?

3. Do you think readers of different generations read the novel differently? Is there more of a focus during a certain period of time on one particular aspect of the novel and its themes?

4. Is the novel a prequel to Jane Eyre, or could it be considered almost as a reimagining of the novel and the characters’ stories?

5. How does the book’s title work in relation to the narrative? If you could rename the book, what would the title be?

6. To what extent does the book build on, or detract from, Jane Eyre? How important is it to remember that these are not Charlotte’s characters?

7. What is the climactic moment of the novel?

8. Are the protagonists also presented as antagonists? How does this affect your reading of the events of the novel?

9. Does Antoinette’s “madness” mean she should be considered an unreliable narrator?

10. Did you feel any sympathy for the characters? If so, which ones and why?

11. How many stars would you give the novel out of five?

In Loving Memory of Bob the Bichon (2007-2019)

A lover of life, the Brontës, and Haworth who knows that I’m just going to write because I can’t help it.

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Please do not copy, share, or use the images from this post without seeking permission first.

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