Monday, December 12, 2011

Empire Falls

Book menu for Empire Falls by Richard Russo

ISBN of edition I read: 0375726403 (paperback)

Food mentioned in Empire Falls:
Burgers, 21
Lobster bisque, 27
Green Mountain coffee, 28
Granola bar, 38
Lemonade, 46
Cookies, 47
Coffee, 47
Hot cocoa, 48
Sugar doughnuts, 84
Chinese food, 101
Fried haddock, whipped potatoes with gravy,
     apple sauce and parker house rolls, 101
Italian food, 102
Mexican food, 102, 423Steamer clams, 135-6
Clams casino, 139
Escargot, 140
Caviar, 144
Cheetos, 173, 374
Chicken salad sandwiches, 181
Seltzer with lime, 191
Beer nuts, 193
Flautas, 211
Hot dogs, 307
French toast, 319
Ham, 319
Roast chicken, 319
New England pot roast, 319
Dairy Queen hamburgers and fries, 334
Prime rib, 365
Seafood enchilada, 429

Books/Authors mentioned in Empire Falls:
The Great Gatsby / F. Scott Fitzgerald, 63
Ernest Hemingway, 127, 370
Ralph Waldo Emerson, 181
Robert Frost, 228
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn / Mark Twain, 232
Emily Dickinson, 245

Music mentioned in Empire Falls:
Abba, 30
     "Mama Mia", 193
     "Dancing Queen"
Barry Manilow, 30
     "Copa Cabana"
Rolling Stones, 41
Beatles Anthology, 75
Perry Como, 278

Artists mentioned in Empire Falls:
Andrew Wyeth, 104
Pablo Picasso, 181, 183, 187
Van Gogh, 360
Dali, 444

Discussion questions for Empire Falls:
Why is Mrs. Whiting so generous to Miles?

Did you notice which chapters are told in the present tense? (Any patterns?; effective?)
[Chapter 4, 10, 30]

What, if anything, does Tick have in common with either of her parents?

Any parallels between Miles and his mother?

Irony: Both Janine and Grace Roby confess their affairs to a priest.

What is the author's opinion of the Catholic church?

Describe the relationship between Janine and Tick?

Which character would you most like to meet?

What role does the river play in the story?(Symbol, metaphor)

How do you feel about most of the kids' treatment of John Voss?

Is Tick a believable character? Explain.   Is she ahead of her time/wiser than her years?

Discuss the author's choice of the name 'Tick'.

Any similarities between Tick and John?

Describe Zack in ONE word.

Why doesn't Tick have friends?

For what is the cat a metaphor?

Describe Jimmy Minty in one word.

What are examples of the 'Empire' falling?

Libraries mentioned in Empire Falls:
page 260: "Hey, speaking of getting pushed around, will you please stand for school board again? The damn fundamentalists are going to ban every library book worth reading if I don't get some help."

page 468 (entire first full paragraph).

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