Enjoy This Reading Guide For Home Before Dark by Susan Wiggs

Looking to add a little bit of romance to your book club. We’re here to help get you talking about a classic love story from author Susan Wiggs–Home Before Dark.

In this reader-favorite tale, #1 New York Times bestselling author Susan Wiggs captures the heartache of long-held regrets as one young woman comes to terms with her past…and reveals devastating secrets.  

As an irresponsible young mother, Jessie Ryder knew she’d never be able to give her newborn the stable family that her older sister could, and the security her child deserved. So Luz and her husband adopted little Lila and told her Jessie was but a distant aunt.

Sixteen years later, having traveled the world with the winds of remorse at her back, Jessie is suspending her photojournalism career to return home—even if it means throwing her sister’s world into turmoil.

Where life once seemed filled with boundless opportunity, Jessie is now on a journey to redeem her careless past, bringing with her a terrible burden. Jessie’s arrival is destined to expose the secrets and lies that barely held her daughter’s adoptive family together to begin with, yet the truth can do so much more than just hurt. It can bring you home to a new kind of honesty, shedding its light into the deepest corners of the heart.

Originally published in 2003.

Includes an exclusive excerpt from BETWEEN YOU AND ME by Susan Wiggs, coming soon from William Morrow!

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Home Before Dark Reading Guide

When you first met Jessie, what did you think about her decision to come home from abroad after fifteen years? Was her motivation valid? Self-serving? Understandable?

What do you think the real story is behind the breakup of Simon and Jessie?

What’s your opinion of the “situation” between Jessie, Ian and Luz? Each of Luz’s kids is at a different stage of development. Did you recognize the stages? Did they remind you of anyone you know?

Was it fair and/or wise for Jessie to take matters into her own hands and keep her secret from the man who fathered her child? Why do you suppose she made the decision she made? What would have happened if she’d come clean right from the start?

What would you have done in her situation? Would you have a problem raising a niece or nephew as your own child? Why or why not?

Luz and Ian kept a big secret, too. Do you agree or disagree with the way they handled it? Why or why not?

When Lila found out the truth, did she react as you would have expected, or did her reaction surprise you? Did it seem realistic, contrived or understandable?

Dusty’s initial reaction to Jessie is instant attraction. Do you believe, if not in love at first sight, at least the sense some people have of destiny? Why or why not? Have you ever experienced it?

Rather than leveling with her sister, Jessie takes off without explanation. As Part 2 opens, several weeks have elapsed. What do you imagine her life was like during those weeks?

How does the novel’s conclusion echo its beginning? How do you think the future will unfold for each of the principal characters? Jessie and Dusty, Luz and Ian, and finally, Lila.

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