The Fiction of Owen Thomas

Welcome Book Club Members!

The Lion Trees covers a lot of thematic territory: family dynamics, love (maternal, paternal, filial and romantic), parenting, lost youth, guilt, betrayal, redemption, the homogenizing wash of popular culture, the indelibility of sexual relationships, the plight of the written word in a videographically-mesmerized culture, the politics of education, the politics of patriotism, the Iraq war, the narcissism of youth, the conceits of older age, the desire to be understood, the long reach of history, the importance of forgiveness, and more. Some of these issues are discussed in a shamelessly fake interview that the author imagined with The New Yorker Magazine.

But at the center of this book is the theme of personal identity and the power that our self-concept has over how we live – as individuals, siblings, children, parents, spouses, lovers and as a nation.  The thematic engine that powers all of the main narratives and most of the sub-narratives in this book is the notion that we will do almost anything to confirm what we believe to be true about ourselves, even if that belief dooms us to unhappiness. Told with equal measures of humor, satirical observation, suspense, and pathos, this is a story about the imprisonment and liberation of the self by the self.

As such, The Lion Trees is a novel with tremendous potential for book club discussion.  If you are a member of a book club that might be interested in reading The Lion Trees, please feel free to contact me by entering the name of your book club, your location, the approximate number of club members, and an email address so that I can contact you. Since I am very interested in introducing The Lion Trees to a book club audience, I am willing to provide this book for free or at greatly reduced cost depending on the size of the club and the mix of paper and e-book readers. I am also available to attend a book club discussion of the novel via Skype or in person if you live in my neck of the woods or if I happen to be visiting yours.

I look forward to hearing from you. 

Discussion Guide for The Lion Trees


INSTRUCTIONS: Please include your name, name of your book club, city and state, number of members, your email contact, and any additional comments.