The Heart's Invisible Furies
by John Boyne
Discussion Questions:
1. It's 1945. Father James Monroe. Care to comment?

2. Point to some of the book's humor - what do you find funny? Is Cyril's voice, or some of his observations, from the womb funny, for instance?

3. Describe the Church's position in the young republic of Ireland and talk about how its power changes by 2015.

4. Cyril knows he is gay; how does he deal with this knowledge, especially in the middle years of the 20th century?

5. What do you make of Cyril's adoptive family, especially his father Charles who insists that Cyril is "not really an Avery" and that he should consider his growing up years with the family as a "tenancy." What does he mean by that, and how do those words affect Cyril?l

6. Why does Maude Avery disdain popularity as a writer? Why does she bother to write and sell books?

7. How would you delineate Cyril's interior monologues from his outward behavior. How do those two modes differ?

8. John Boyne's book is very much about self-transformation. "Even at that tender age I knew that there was something about me that was different and that it would be impossible ever to put right." Is change possible after a certain age, after the brain becomes less malleable?

9. Boyne peppers his writing with coincidence. Why might he do so: what is he suggesting by its frequent use?

10. Talk about post-war Ireland in the 1950s. In what way might you describe it as nightmarish?

11. Consider the book's title. What are the furies, and why invisible? Boyne reserves much of his ire not only for the clergy, but also politicians. What makes him angry?

12. Which section of The Heart's Invisible Furies engage you more than the others ... and why?

(Discussion Questions by LitLovers )


Book Club Talking Points:
Cyril was a gay man living in a time when he was forced to hide his true identity or face jail or even death. His teenage mother gave birth to him out of wedlock, which was reason enough for her family to publicly shame her and her church and community to run her out of town, penniless. A quirky couple adopted Cyril. They provided financially for him but continuously told him he was not a "real" Avery. Thus his childhood lacked the love and nurturing most children receive. The book is epic, following the lives of Cyril and his mother, and tackles many controversial topics and examines some critical issues from 1949 to present.
More Reading Suggestions
Popular Books
If you have a passion for reading and, like most, have no time to find the right book, browse the most popular books trending right now. They are all page-turners, and they all let you escape from reality.

Popular Book-  The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
The Song of Achilles
By Madeline Miller
A tale of gods, kings, immortal fame, and the human heart, THE SONG OF ACHILLES is a dazzling literary feat that brilliantly reimagines Homer's enduring masterwork, The Iliad. An action-packed adventure, an epic love story, a marvelously...More


Popular Book-The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
In this entrancing novel "that speaks to the Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor in us all" (Kirkus Reviews), a legendary film actress reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the...More


Popular The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
The Silent Patient
by Alex Michaelides
The Silent Patient is a shocking psychological thriller of a woman's act of violence against her husband-and of the therapist obsessed with uncovering her motive. Alicia Berenson's life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter...More


Popular Book- Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
Circe
By Madeline Miller
In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child-not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for ...More


Popular Book- The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
The Unhoneymooners
By Christina Lauren
AFor two sworn enemies, anything can happen during the Hawaiian trip of a lifetime-maybe even love-in this romantic comedy from the New York Times bestselling authors of Roomies. Olive Torres is used to being the unlucky ...More


Visit Our Blog
Browse A Little
PBR book reviews and Reading guides for book clubs
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Pintrest Follow us on InstaGram
Visit out Etsy Shop
10 Books I Can't Stop Recommending
10 Books I Can't Stop Recommending