- Discuss how the story follows and deviates from
the classic fairy tale. Use at least three examples.
- "I was the princess in the castle in the
sleeping woods" (19). Consider what the "curse" is in this version. How is Gemma like the princess.
Use some specific examples.
- The box. Pandora's? How do the mysterious contents
peek our interest in the history behind each piece? Discuss how narrative and family history plays a major role
here. There are always double or triple "palismpsest-type" of stories going on. Give an example. Isn't
a map-reader a story-teller? Define what history is.
- What is in a name? What is our identity? Our past?
Is our future determined by our past, by our relatives' past? How important are our roots?
- Why is the "promise" so important? Is
it another type of "obsessive-compulsive" behavior?
- "A hundred years, a thousand years, "Gemma
said. It doesn't matter. Dead is dead" (62).
- Time does not excuse conscience," Havey said
shortly. "Time does not erase this" (72). "Because . . ." he whispered, "what's past is
- "But she was fearless nonetheless, and cheerful,
having no past to haunt her" (180).
- "Your own American writer Emerson said, 'The
hero is not fed on sweets but daily his own heart he eats'" (194).
- "Truth is never tidy. Only fairy tales"