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Seven Days of Us by Francesca Hornak is about a family forced to spend seven days together during Christmastime. The following book club questions will have spoilers so if you haven’t read the novel yet, check out my preview and review.
It’s Christmas, and for the first time in years the entire Birch family will be under one roof. Even Emma and Andrew’s elder daughter will join them at Weyfield Hall, their aging country estate. But Olivia, a doctor, is only coming home because she has to. Having just returned from treating an epidemic abroad, she’s been told she must stay in quarantine for a week…and so too should her family.
For the next seven days, the Birches are locked down, cut off from the rest of humanity—and even decent Wi-Fi—and forced into each other’s orbits. Younger, unabashedly frivolous daughter Phoebe is fixated on her upcoming wedding, while Olivia deals with the culture shock of being immersed in first-world problems. In close proximity, not much can stay hidden for long, and as revelations and long-held tensions come to light, nothing is more shocking than the unexpected guest who’s about to arrive.
Let’s get into the book club questions.
- Why do you think Emma tried to keep her cancer diagnosis a secret? Why didn’t she even tell Andrew? On the flip side, why do you think she told Jesse (at the time a stranger) at the airport?
- Why do you think Olivia was so drawn to her work in Liberia? Why did she dread coming back home so much?
- Now let’s focus on Andrew. Why did he ignore Jesse’s emails? Why couldn’t he tell Emma the truth about Jesse?
- What did you think about Phoebe? Just simply selfish or do you think there’s more going on with her?
- Even though Andrew doesn’t email Jesse back, he still makes the trip to England. What would you have done if you were in his situation?
- What are some of the main reasons Emma and Andrew drifted apart? Do you think they’ll stay close now that her diagnosis is known and Andrew quit his job?
- Why do you think Olivia and especially Phoebe seemed resistant to Jesse at first? Were you surprised that Jesse stuck around the house?
- So let’s talk about George, do you think Jesse will ever tell the truth about what happened that night?
- The family goes through quite a bit of trauma from finding out Emma’s diagnosis to the Sean’s passing. How did it all bring the family closer together?
- Were you surprised that Olivia was pregnant?
- Let’s talk about what we think will happen next to the five characters. Will Jesse stay in touch with the family?
- What do you think it would be like if you were forced to stay inside for seven days with your family?
- How do you rank this (somewhat) holiday-themed story compared to other ones?