Escape Club YA Bookclub discussion

Panic (Panic, #1)
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February 2015 book club: Panic by Lauren Oliver

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message 1: by Marianne (last edited Mar 03, 2015 01:56PM) (new)

Marianne Pierres (mariannedepierres) | 79 comments Mod
Thanks to everyone who participated in January book club! The thread will remain open for latecomers to comment.

We'll be meeting back here at then end of February to discuss PANIC. In the mean time, feel free to post book recommendations in our book rec. thread.

best
Marianne


message 2: by Marianne (last edited Mar 03, 2015 01:56PM) (new)

Marianne Pierres (mariannedepierres) | 79 comments Mod
Hi Everyone,

our reviews for February's book club PANIC by Lauren Oliver are now live:

http://www.burnbright.com.au/book-clu...

The girls differ on their opinions this month, so it will be interesting to see what you all think.

Here are some discussion points to kick you off:

Krista: In my opinion, this quote fits Heather’s character, “Love the moment. Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed.” – Anonymous. Do you agree? What are some specific times throughout the story that Heather really focused on the big picture and didn’t just act spur of the moment?

I personally felt that the addition of the tigers to the story was out of left field and didn’t quite fit the rest of the story. Was there any part of this story that did not feel realistic to you?

Joelene: This theme seems to be running through the story: Is poverty a cycle or a choice?


Belinda. Hamilton (belindahamilton) | 16 comments Mod
Ooo great discussion topics...

Joelene: This theme seems to be running through the story: Is poverty a cycle or a choice?

*first world nations*
Depends on the area and the person. In some cases it is a vicious cycle. Low socio-economical areas rarely get the budget to lift schools to the same level as those in the more affluent areas, which sets kids behind the 8 ball to become high achievers.

However working hard will bring results, scholarships are possible.

Great teachers, parents and mentors can make a HUGE difference.

Education is the key to escaping poverty.


message 4: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (turningpages) | 10 comments Mod
Belinda. wrote: "Ooo great discussion topics...

Joelene: This theme seems to be running through the story: Is poverty a cycle or a choice?

*first world nations*
Depends on the area and the person. In some cases ..."


I agree. Anything is possible, but you REALLY have to work for it. You have to be passionate, hard working...and be okay with not getting any sleep. Working and going to school, is incredibly hard, trust me.

I work to pay for school, I attend school to go to work...its a vicious cycle.


message 5: by Joelene (last edited Mar 04, 2015 01:51AM) (new)

Joelene | 5 comments I love the idea that anything is possible, but in my head it doesn't hook up to a reality. A school with more students and less resources/teachers and a home with parents who - however much they might want to help - don't have the education to. And all of this while the kid is usually at school on an impoverished diet. That desperation does tie into Panic, I guess. In order to get out you have to win the lottery - or Panic.

As to Krista's topic, 'In my opinion, this quote fits Heather’s character, “Love the moment. Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed.” – Anonymous. Do you agree? What are some specific times throughout the story that Heather really focused on the big picture and didn’t just act spur of the moment?'

I agree that Heather is someone who grows when her circumstances are at the worst. She relies on others to see her at the start of the book; by the end her confidence comes from herself. But I don't think she did focus on the big picture. She was the only stability in her sister's life, but she risks that again and again even when they're both safe. Luckily Bishop had the foresight to focus on the big picture for her.


Krista (CubicleBlindness Reviews) (cubicleblindness) | 34 comments Mod
I think that in Heather's case that the risks she was taking were worth it because of the end results. When she stops to analyze this moment is a low moment, but if I don't fight through it, I won't get the good ones. I agree she did put her sister in danger sometimes by continuing with the challenges, but not risking it would be giving up before trying. Heather is about to graduate, she can leave, but her sister is too young, everything Heather did was for her. Yet without Bishop she never would have made it to the end.

As with poverty it is hard to say 100% I agree with what the others have been saying, yet I also think that people tend to stick with what they know. If they become numb to abuse, lose their spirit and learn what they see is how it's supposed to be may have a tendency to always fall back into the patterns. You really do have to try hard to get out of some circumstances and without help, it can be futile.


Krista (CubicleBlindness Reviews) (cubicleblindness) | 34 comments Mod
So does anybody else feel off about the Tigers in the story? Or am I alone on that one..they just felt like a really weird addition to me, just thrown in for an extra element of excitement


message 8: by Joelene (new)

Joelene | 5 comments I didn't feel that off about the tigers. Tonnes of them are kept as pets in the U.S. I did find it weird that Heather suddenly wanted to be a vet after standing aside and letting the Panic kids have access to the tiger enclosure (an act that would mean death for the tigers and prison for Anne if they did hurt Natalie), especially when she wasn't careful enough of the tigers to make sure they were safe after the game - and when she kept playing the game after one of the tigers had died.


Krista (CubicleBlindness Reviews) (cubicleblindness) | 34 comments Mod
I guess I had no idea that it was actually something people did. That is interesting I will have to look up some information on how many people actually have tigers here in the US! I was completely caught off guard when they were added to the story and felt completely odd about it.
This is something I will look into, Thx JOel


message 10: by Kim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kim Falconer (kimfalconer) | 25 comments Krista wrote: "So does anybody else feel off about the Tigers in the story? Or am I alone on that one..they just felt like a really weird addition to me, just thrown in for an extra element of excitement"

The tigers were a major plot point to move the story forward, but it did feel contrived to me. It wasn't so much that there were tigers but that Anne didn't have a license to handle them and that they could be so easily let out.

Overall, the read was gripping. Page turning. There were some one liners repeated often that could have been caught in editing. ie 'felt punched in the guts' happened way too often to multiple characters, but overall, a good read.

The events were extreme but the emotions and growth opportunities they presented were very real for high school leavers.

All the parents and families were so dysfunctional. It really allowed the youths to create something for themselves, or not, making the story fully a YA world.

Poverty as choice or cycle is a little chicken-egg. If it feels like there is no choice, it becomes a cycle, but if it's seen as a cycle, then it can be broken.

Oliver brings up hard questions!


Krista (CubicleBlindness Reviews) (cubicleblindness) | 34 comments Mod
Kim wrote: "Krista wrote: "So does anybody else feel off about the Tigers in the story? Or am I alone on that one..they just felt like a really weird addition to me, just thrown in for an extra element of exc..."

Wow, I am jealous you worded it so perfectly! Those were my thoughts about the story exactly. "contrived" is the perfect word fit.

I agree this is the third book I have read by Lauren Oliver and one thing that she always provides the reader is hard questions. Her books really make you think.


message 12: by Kim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kim Falconer (kimfalconer) | 25 comments Krista wrote: "Kim wrote: "Krista wrote: "So does anybody else feel off about the Tigers in the story? Or am I alone on that one..they just felt like a really weird addition to me, just thrown in for an extra el..."

Heyo, Krista :)!

The paradox is that everything we write is 'contrived'. The trick is to make it not feel that way.

What other Lauren Oliver books have you read? This was my first!


Krista (CubicleBlindness Reviews) (cubicleblindness) | 34 comments Mod
Kim wrote: "Krista wrote: "Kim wrote: "Krista wrote: "So does anybody else feel off about the Tigers in the story? Or am I alone on that one..they just felt like a really weird addition to me, just thrown in ..."

I have read Before I Fall and Delirium by Lauren Oliver. I actually have her newest book Vanishing Girls to be read soon too


message 14: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (turningpages) | 10 comments Mod
Krista wrote: "I think that in Heather's case that the risks she was taking were worth it because of the end results. When she stops to analyze this moment is a low moment, but if I don't fight through it, I won'..."

Completely agree. It was kind of random in the Panic, but I also thought that this showed how much this random lady cared about Heather and her little sister. Especially when their mom didn't seem to.

LOVE this point Krista!


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