Book Club Discussion Guide

The Clover Girls

By Viola Shipman

Reading Group Questions

  1. A major theme of The Clover Girls is friendship. Who are your best friends? Why are they? How did you meet and become friends? What have you gone through together over the years? Discuss.
  2. Did you attend summer camp? If so, what kind: Sleepaway, day, church, sports?
  3. Do you remember the friends you made there? Do you still stay in touch with any of them?
  4. What were your favorite activities at camp? Memories? What did you learn? What helped build your confidence as a young woman? Discuss.
  5. Do you think it’s easier or harder to make and maintain friendships as adults? Why or why not?
  6. Another main theme of the novel is why women are often at odds with or do not support one another. Why do think that is? Are women taught to be wary of or competitive with one another growing up? How can women support and empower one another better in life, work and society? Discuss.
  7. Have you ever lost a best friend before? Why? Did you try to regain that friendship?
  8. Has a close friend died? How did that impact you? How did you celebrate her life?
  9. Who we are as children – and the dreams we have – is another foundational storyline in the novel. Why do we too often lose or forget who we were when we were younger? Why do we set aside the childhood dreams we had? It is just part of growing up? Does family and society change us and our dreams too much? How do we recapture that?
  10. Family is a foundational theme in every novel I write. Liz’s children and family are not supportive of her, from helping care for their grandmother to supporting their mother when she needs it the most. Is your family supportive of you in times of crisis? Why are some people incapable of caring for others, especially the elderly or infirmed? Is it selfishness?
  11. V, Rachel and Liz are all successful but not happy. Why do we too often pursue the wrong paths, be it for marriage, money, or power? Are we changing for the better or worse as a society in regard to that?
  12. What defines summer to you and your family? What are your favorite summer activities and traditions? Making S’mores by the campfire? Going to the beach? Heading to a cabin by the lake? Eating ice cream? Staying in a cute B&B and shopping in an adorable resort town? Why? Discuss.


I love book clubs! As much as writing books (and coffee and wine and chocolate)! And I love to talk to book clubs. They are truly the lifeblood of an author. And I am always willing – depending on my writing and travel schedule, and with enough notice – to talk with any and all book clubs (via phone call, Skype, Facetime … I love to see your faces!).


Please contact to schedule a time for your book club to discuss any of my books!