This books brings up some great discussion topics – things I’d be interested in hearing about from other people’s perspectives. Below I’ve posted three broad topics / questions that I would love to hear your thoughts on. In the next week or two, I will also be posting a link to my thoughts for each topic. Feel free to post your thoughts here on the main And She Was page or on the sublinks.

  • Brandy as a character – why choose a drifter as the main character (other than just because she’s an interesting character)? Did you find her likable – initially, and as the story progressed? What did you think of her ongoing rant about blonds – fake versus real? Whose version of the meaning behind the Talking Heads song “And She Was” did you find more accurate – Bellie’s or Brandy’s? And She Was – Brandy (spoilers).
  • The setting – how is the setting in the Aleutian Islands essential to Brandy’s development? Could she have settled or been stuck somewhere else with a deep history and had a similar character progression? See my commentary on And She Was – Setting.
  • The Author’s Note discusses which parts of the Aleut history in the book are accurate and which come from the author’s imagination. The additions, of course, involve the group of women breaking taboos and using stolen power to save their people in ways that are often morally murky. What are your views on the morality of their actions? Are their actions justified, and to what extent? Have their actions been successful – have they saved their people over the years, and, again, to what extent? And She Was – The Aleutian Women (spoilers).

Addendum – Birds:

After posting my Birds in Books Life List idea, I skimmed through And She Was again, looking for bird sightings, and found… nothing. A few eagles. A couple of generic “seagulls.” Not even any symbolic eagles, as far as I could tell. Maybe it’s a sign of Brandy’s character, that she just doesn’t notice things like birds. There are plenty of little details, particularly about people, but no birds. Oh well. There are lots of birds coming up in To the Bright Edge of the World.


Bald Eagle

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