Book Club: Hello Beautiful

Hello Beautiful

Welcome to the Book Club hub for Hello Beautiful!

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If You Liked

If You Liked...Hello Beautiful

You'll like character-driven stories about families and sisters, Chicago, the 1970s, or Little Women.

Discussion Questions

  1. Who is your favourite character in this book? Who did you most identify with, and why?
  2. Discuss the rift that occurs between William, Julia, and Sylvie, and the choices each character makes to contribute to that rift. If you were involved in a similar situation, what might you have done?
  3. How did the ending make you feel? What do you think might happen for William and Alice next?
  4. Ann Napolitano has said that Hello Beautiful is an homage to Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. Have you read Little
    Women—and, if so, what traces of Alcott’s classic novel of sisterhood do you see in Napolitano’s?
  5. Discuss how mental health plays a role in the story of Hello Beautiful. Did William’s depressive experience feel “real” to you, for example? What about his parents’?
  6. Sylvie imagined her life to be full of “third doors,” or unexpected ways of living that allow her to choose her own path. What third doors can you see in your own life? Have you ever wanted to make an unexpected decision? What did you choose?
  7. The characters in Hello Beautiful keep secrets from each other, sometimes for years. Almost all of these secrets eventually come to light. Have you ever kept a secret from a loved one? Do you agree with the reasons why Emeline, Julia, and Rose kept secrets from theirs?
  8. In addition to romantic relationships, Hello Beautiful featured different types of nuclear families: William’s; the Padavanos; Julia and Alice’s; and the “super-duplex” where Cecelia, Izzy, Emeline, and Josie live together. Talk about what family looks like in the pages of this novel. Which family appeals to you most?
  9. Throughout the novel, several of the characters experience tragedy and loss. What do you think the novel is saying about resilience and hope in the face of difficult times? And how, if at all, does this messaging speak to you?
  10. What do you think happens next for the characters, after the novel ends?
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