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Shelter of Leaves: A Novel
by Lenore Gay

Published: 2016-08-09
Paperback : 348 pages
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On Memorial Day, a series of bomb explosions shuts down major cities across the US. Her apartment in ruins, Sabine flees Washington DC and begins a grueling journey on foot that brings her to West Virginia, where she finds safety at an abandoned farmhouse with other refugees.

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Introduction

On Memorial Day, a series of bomb explosions shuts down major cities across the US. Her apartment in ruins, Sabine flees Washington DC and begins a grueling journey on foot that brings her to West Virginia, where she finds safety at an abandoned farmhouse with other refugees.

For Sabine, family is a vague memory?she can’t even remember her last name. Without an identity, she hides?although thirty-five, she pretends to be twenty-eight, even to the refugee she falls in love with. But Sabine wants to recover her identity. Despite gangs, bombings, riots, and spreading disease, she longs to return to a family she has begun to recall?a mother, a father, and brothers. Are they alive, surviving, in hiding as she is? Do they await news, and hope to reconcile? Even in harrowing times, Sabine’s desires to belong and to be loved pull her away from shelter.

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Excerpt

Chapter 1

DOGS OF SANITY
May 26, 2014. Memorial Day.

The last thing Sabine remembered was a flash coming through the window and a shudder like colliding subway cars. She woke sprawled on the floor, unsure where she was. She stumbled to the window. Buildings across the street swayed and her apartment building shook. She ran room to room, avoiding flying glass, yelling. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

1. What do you think accounts for the appeal of post-apocalyptic fictions?

2. What is the significance of Sabine’s trauma?

3. The characters Sabine encounters aren’t simply consequences of the dystopian America. What accounts for their changes in behaviors?

4. What do we learn from Sabine as she goes on the first harrowing journey and finds other refugees? How does she make her way back to herself?

5. How does Sabine work through her psychological and emotional suffering and memory loss in order to reclaim her identity and family?

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by robandjenbailey (see profile) 09/02/17

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