Magnificent Marvel Supersale
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores


    Recently Viewed clear list


    The Powell's Playlist | February 27, 2015

    Kazuo Ishiguro: IMG Kazuo Ishiguro's Playlist for The Buried Giant



    The eight songs on this playlist didn't "inspire" The Buried Giant, nor did I play them out loud while writing. And with the notable exception of... Continue »

    spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$7.50
List price: $16.00
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

More copies of this ISBN

The Winter Vault (Vintage International)

by

The Winter Vault (Vintage International) Cover

 

 

Reading Group Guide

1. Discuss the metaphor of the title, The Winter Vault.

2. Have you read Michaels's first novel, Fugitive Pieces? What parallels do you see between that novel and her new novel?

3. Reread the two passages at the very beginning. Now that you've read the entire book, what do the phrases “No image forgets this origin” and “No word forgets this origin” mean to you?

4. The book opens with Avery painting Jean's back, and closes with her painting his. What is the significance of this act?

5. Throughout the novel, themes of human destruction and rebuilding play out. What do you think Michaels is trying to say? Can you think of any destruction in the novel that's not human in origin?

6. How does Jean's botany connect to Avery's work?

7. What is the purpose of the Belzoni flashback on pages 30-32?

8. Why does Georgina Foyle affect Avery so strongly?

9. Words carry a lot of weight with the characters, especially through their storytelling. How do Avery, Jean, and Lucjan use words to achieve-or avoid-intimacy?

10. On page 93, Marina says, “Love must wait for wounds to heal.” Whose wounds is she talking about? How does this notion resonate throughout the novel?

11. Avery longs to save something, rather than destroy things. How does he finally do this?

12. Discuss the idea of home. How does it differ for the Nubians, the Poles, Avery, Jean, Lucjan?

13. On page 140, Jean talks about virtually indestructible seeds, which can lay dormant for centuries before sprouting. What is she really talking about?

14. “I want to build the room where I wish I'd been born,” Avery says on page 158. What does he mean by that?

15. How does Jean's dream (pages 166-7) relate to her pregnancy? How does it change her?

16. What is the connection between Jean's after-hours gardening and Lucjan's “Caveman” paintings?

17. On pages 202-3, Jean realizes Lucjan's painting “was not about Lascaux but about exile and the seizing of joy that will not come of its own accord.” Who else tries to seize joy, and how do they do it?

18. Reread the paragraph on page 214 that begins, “Cities, like people, are born with a soul. . .” Could you say the same about the Nubian countryside and the small towns along the St. Lawrence?

19. Daub writes to Jean (page 249): “Perhaps there is a collective dead. But there is no such thing as a collective death. Each death, each birth, a single death, a single birth.” What does this mean for Jean, for Lucjan, for the post-Holocaust world?

20. How does the jazz group the Stray Dogs fit into the larger story?

21. Reread and discuss Ranger's rant on pages 266-7.

22. Several times in the novel, Lucjan tells Jean that we only get one chance to be happy in life, and if something goes wrong, that chance is lost forever. Where do you think that turning point is for him? For Jean? And Avery? Do you agree with this theory?

23. “Regret is not the end of the story; it is the middle of the story”(page 336). The novel closes with this thought. What does it mean?

(For a complete list of available reading group guides, and to sign up for the Reading Group Center enewsletter, visit www.readinggroupcenter.com)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307455765
Author:
Michaels, Anne
Publisher:
Vintage Books USA
Author:
Norman, Howard
Author:
Callow, Simon
Author:
Barnes, Julian
Author:
Fitzgerald, Penelope
Author:
Hollinghurst, Alan
Author:
McWilliam, Candia
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Historical
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage International
Publication Date:
20100431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
8 x 5.31 in 1 lb

Other books you might like

  1. Wanting Sale Hardcover $3.97
  2. The New Valley Used Trade Paper $5.95
  3. Diamond Ruby Used Trade Paper $2.95
  4. The Road Home
    Used Trade Paper $5.50
  5. Hovering of Vultures Used Mass Market $5.95
  6. The Broken Shore
    Used Trade Paper $5.50

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Winter Vault (Vintage International) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.50 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780307455765 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
In eighteenth-century Germany, the impetuous student of philosophy who will later gain fame as the Romantic poet Novalis seeks his father's permission to wed his true philosophy — a plain, simple child named Sophie. The attachment shocks his family and friends. This brilliant young man, betrothed to a twelve-year-old dullard! How can it be? A literary sensation and a bestseller in England and the United States, The Blue Flower was one of eleven books- and the only paperback- chosen as an Editor's Choice by the New York Times Book Review. The 1997 National Book Critics Circle Award Winner in Fiction.
"Synopsis" by ,
"Freddie's" is the familiar name of the Temple Stage School, which supplies London's West End theaters with child actors for everything from Shakespeare to musicals to the Christmas pantomime. Its proprietress, Freddie Wentworth, is a formidable woman of unknown age and murky background who brings anyone she encounters under her spell — so common an occurrence that it is known as "being Freddied." At her school, we meet dour Pierce, a teacher hopelessly smitten with enchanting Hannah; Jonathan, a child actor of great promise, and his slick rival Mattie; and Joey Blatt, who has wicked plans to rescue Freddie's from insolvency. Up to its surprising conclusion, At Freddie's is thoroughly beguiling.
"Synopsis" by ,
Beautiful Chiara is the last of the Ridolfi, a Florentine family of long lineage and eccentric habits. She is smitten with Salvatore, a brilliant but penniless doctor, a rational man who wants nothing to do with romance. This is the story of how these two--with the best intentions, the kindest of instincts, and the most meddlesome of friends--make each other wonderfully miserable inside.
"Synopsis" by ,
On the Battersea Reach of the Thames, a mixed bag of eccentrics live in houseboats. Belonging to neither land nor sea, they belong to one another. There is Maurice, a homosexual prostitute; Richard, a buttoned-up ex-navy man; but most of all there's Nenna, the struggling mother of two wild little girls. How each of their lives complicates the others is the stuff of this perfect little novel.
"Synopsis" by ,

From National Book Award finalist Howard Norman, a novel of extraordinary emotional power--the story of a writer whose short and erotically charged marriage has ended in his wife's unsolved murder, and who, in the confusing aftermath, sells the story to an ambitious filmmaker

"Synopsis" by ,
“An opening sentence worthy of the Noir Hall of Fame . . . provocative . . . haunting . . . deft.” — Janet Maslin, New York Times
 
“Engrossing . . . Norman pulls off a fascinating balancing act here: the literary page-turner that, when it’s done, you want to retrace.” — Seattle Times

Sam Lattimore meets Elizabeth Church in 1970s Halifax, in an art gallery. Their brief, erotically charged marriage is extinguished with Elizabeth’s murder. Sam’s life afterward is complicated. In a moment of desperate confusion, he sells his life story to a Norwegian filmmaker named Istvakson, known for the stylized violence of his films, whose artistic drive sets in motion an increasingly intense cat-and-mouse game between the two men. Furthermore, Sam has begun “seeing” Elizabeth—not only seeing but holding conversations with her, almost every evening, and what at first seems simply hallucination born of terrible grief reveals itself, evening by evening, as something else entirely.

 

"Synopsis" by ,
Winner of the Booker Prize

On the Battersea Reach of the Thames, a mixed bag of the slightly disreputable, the temporarily lost, and the patently eccentric live on houseboats, rising and falling with the great river’s tides. Belonging to neither land nor sea, they cling to one another in a motley yet kindly society. There is Maurice, by occupation a male prostitute, by happenstance a receiver of stolen goods. And Richard, a buttoned-up ex-navy man whose boat dominates the Reach. Then there is Nenna, a faithful but abandoned wife, the diffident mother of two young girls running wild on the waterfront streets.

It is Nenna’s domestic predicament that, as it deepens, draws the relations among this scrubby community together into ever more complex and comic patterns. The result is one of Fitzgerald’s greatest triumphs, a novel the Booker judges deemed “flawless.”

“A marvelous achievement: strong, supple, humane, ripe, generous, and graceful.” —Sunday Times

spacer
spacer
  • back to top

FOLLOW US ON...

     
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.