Vegan Book Club discussion

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May 2020: Tin Heart > Chapters 1-17

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message 1: by Tessa (new)

Tessa (trisstessa) | 616 comments Mod
Share your thoughts on the first half of Tin Heart here!

Some questions to consider:
- What do you think of Marlowe?
- Is her obsession with her donor's family reasonable? Should she continue trying to contact them despite their request to the hospital?
- How do you think her next encounter with Carmen will go? Will she tell her the truth?
- Do you think the novel is a case of good vegan representation?


message 2: by Tabbie (new)

Tabbie Elliott 1. I like Marlowe in the sense that she is still figuring herself out. She wants to be bold but she also is not yet comfortable to stand out. I felt this way throughout school. It was not until my last year of collage that I cut my hair off and went vegetarian which my mom thought was super extreme at the time. I identify with her.

2. I also think her obsession with her donor is reasonable. I work with patients who have blood cancer and some of them get stem cell transplants from donors they don’t know. After a year out from transplant they have an option (if both say yes) to reach out to each other. These transplants save their life and change the patients blood type to their donors. Even females can show a Y chromosome if they get a transplant from a male. I think it’s a unique bond. Some even say their food preference change. Though I think the Carmen connection will blow up in her face when she tells her the truth, I get wanting to know who her donor was. 🙈

3. See above haha. I think she will tell her the truth and I think at first it will go poorly. I hope their relationship recovers though.

4. I would say it’s an interesting take on the vegan lifestyle. I love that her mom is a huge activist and has a vegan business. — I like a guy who is a pain in the butt sometimes and flirty in a mean-ish witty way. But, If I was Marlowe, after the offal... I probably would have been done with Leo. That was a little too far for me. Though I like that she’s dishing it back at him. I also like that she sees the possible good in him and the struggle he faces. We are all products of our parents and sometimes our glasses are tinted by how we are raised to see life. It takes someone opening our mind and eyes to change our perceptions. I hope Marlowe can do this with Leo.


message 3: by Tessa (new)

Tessa (trisstessa) | 616 comments Mod
So far, I really like this, though I do find Marlowe to be a bit too dramatic at times...this is probably because I've forgotten what it's like to be a teenager lol. I was probably just as over-the-top in my feelings.

I wish she hadn't lied to Carmen about who she is - I can only see this backfiring spectacularly - but I get why she did it. I'm surprised she hasn't gotten a response to her message in the Facebook group actually. I'm very curious as to why the hospital would say the family wanted no contact while it seems very likely that her donor's family was searching via FB. Of course, that person's post could have just been a coincidence and that's not the donor's family at all. That'd be interesting to see as well!

I love Marlowe's mom's activism. She's so fun too! And I was really worried that Marlowe would go into that chicken place and order chicken (after all, in the beginning, she makes a comment about missing cheese and vegan food having no taste or something similar), so I was very happy that she didn't! I read that the author is vegetarian so I think that bodes well for veg representation in this.


message 4: by Tessa (new)

Tessa (trisstessa) | 616 comments Mod
Tabbie wrote: "1. I like Marlowe in the sense that she is still figuring herself out. She wants to be bold but she also is not yet comfortable to stand out. I felt this way throughout school. It was not until my ..."

That's so interesting about transplants and how they affect the people who get them. I know absolutely nothing about anything medical-related so I never would have considered that!

And yes, I agree about Leo and the offal - that's, uh, a bit much. I would be so repulsed and just try to ignore him lol I actually thought we'd see more of him based on the novel's description, so I'm definitely interested in seeing how he grows in the second half.


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

I'll just like to preface that I only got to ch.5 in the book due to final exams and being an essential worker. Next discussion I'll be caught up.
1. Honestly, she comes across as an average teen in most novels- anxious that comes across as self-absorbed at times, being embarrassed by her family, and meeting a cute boy who'll come across at the love interest as the end. I hope by the end of the book she becomes more confident but so far there's nothing unique about her except of what happened to her. I personally find her boring and a little annoying at times but maybe that'll change in the next few chapters.
2. She is being quite selfish towards the donor family. Yes, she realizes they are grieving and knows why they won't contact, but actions speak louder than words. After the second attempt, she should stop trying to contact them for at least a year. I can't imagine the poor family having to decline again and again while they are dealing with their grief. But I can see it being reasonable considering what happen, she's just a teen who's scared and maybe wants to make sure the family knows that the boy's heart didn't go in vain.

I like the book so far and now that everything's died down I can finish reading it.


message 6: by Tessa (last edited May 13, 2020 06:25AM) (new)

Tessa (trisstessa) | 616 comments Mod
Adrian wrote: "I'll just like to preface that I only got to ch.5 in the book due to final exams and being an essential worker. Next discussion I'll be caught up.
1. Honestly, she comes across as an average teen i..."


I felt the same way about Marlowe at first, but I do think she gets better as the story goes on. Like Tabbie said, she's still trying to figure herself out, which I assume is especially hard given what's essentially been an isolation from her peers due to her health issues.

I know it's not easy to accept that the donor's family doesn't want contact, but I definitely don't think she's going about it the right way. But I've never been in her position, so what do I know?


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