BKMT READING GUIDES

The Bitter and Sweet of Cherry Season: A Novel
by Fader Molly

Published: 2020-06-09T00:0
Paperback : 320 pages
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“A stunning story about family and hope that unfolds unexpectedly but beautifully, like a Michigan summer sunset over an orchard.” —Viola Shipman, bestselling author of The Heirloom Garden and The Summer Cottage

In cherry season, anything is possible…

Everything Hope knows ...

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Introduction

“A stunning story about family and hope that unfolds unexpectedly but beautifully, like a Michigan summer sunset over an orchard.” —Viola Shipman, bestselling author of The Heirloom Garden and The Summer Cottage

In cherry season, anything is possible…

Everything Hope knows about the Orchard House is from the stories of her late mother. So when she arrives at the northern Michigan family estate late one night with a terrible secret and her ten-year-old daughter in tow, she’s not sure if she’ll be welcomed or turned away with a shotgun by the aunt she has never met.

Hope’s aunt, Peg, has lived in the Orchard House all her life, though the property has seen better days. She agrees to take Hope in if, in exchange, Hope helps with the cherry harvest—not exactly Hope’s specialty, but she’s out of options. As Hope works the orchard alongside her aunt, daughter and a kind man she finds increasingly difficult to ignore, a new life begins to blossom. But the mistakes of the past are never far behind, and soon the women will find themselves fighting harder than ever for their family roots and for each other.

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Excerpt

Chapter 1
Hope
Night in Northern Michigan was no joke.
Hope had never seen a dark so dark. It had heft and dimension, like she was driving right into an abyss. She thought about waking up Tink in the back to show her, but the girl had finally fallen asleep, and she needed the rest. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

1. Hope doesn’t remember being at the farm in part because she was so young. What is your earliest memory? Another reason Hope doesn’t remember being at the farm is because her mother never talked about it, so the memories were never reinforced. Are your earliest memories reinforced by family stories? How reliable do you think those memories are?

2. Hope struggles to categorize herself and her mother as “good moms.” Something that Peg questions. Do you think any of the women in this book were good mothers? What are your qualifications for a good mother? Do the circumstances surrounding their motherhood change your opinions? Did your opinion change over the course of the book?

3. Peg keeps the past a secret from Hope. Do you think she did this because she was ashamed that she didn’t look for Hope? Or do you think she did it to protect Hope from being hurt any more than she’d already been hurt? Do you agree or disagree with her decision?

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