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Aug 30

Summer of '69 by Elin Hilderbrand Book Club Discussion Questions / Guide

Posted on August 30, 2019 at 2:23 PM by Lindsey Kult

Summer of 69 Book Cover

We noticed that there aren't any book club questions for Elin Hilderbrand's Summer of '69 online. We are problem-solving librarians and set out to help fellow book lovers by creating a list of 9 questions for book clubs. We hope this list helps many book clubs have a meaningful discussion of this book. Click here for the printable PDF

1. Were you alive during the summer of 1969? If so, did this book seem realistic to you? Did the songs trigger any memories for you?

2. Summer of ‘69 is a story of family --- of mothers and children. Compare and contrast Kate and Exalta. What is the source of friction between them --- their differences, or their similarities? What are they like as mothers? How do mother and daughter change as the summer progresses?

3. What are your thoughts on Blair’s marriage and pregnancy? How would her pregnancy and relationship with her husband be viewed today?

4. Summer of ‘69 is also a story of relationships. Talk about the bond between Jessie and her grandmother. What changes during the summer? Does Jessie change more than Exalta? Vice versa?

5. How did you envision Tiger’s story ending? How do you think Kate felt about Tiger’s last letter? Proud? Devastated? Or something else?

6. Did the characters seem believable to you? Did Elin Hilderbrand’s characters surprise you in anyway?

7. Elin Hilderbrand tends to write main characters from multiple generations. Which character did you find most relatable? Why?

8. Do you think Elin Hilderbrand’s decision to have Jessie’s interaction with her first tennis coach was a commentary on today’s #metoo movement? How would you have reacted as a young girl or as her grandmother?

9. Lifestyle is central to the story. The Levins and Nichols live a relatively pampered life. How did meeting Pick adjust Jessie’s worldview? What characters influenced Kirby’s worldview?