Reading Group Guide
1. Hannah Bradshaw moved into a different phase of her life with her new husband, John Bradshaw, and her newfound freedom. As she begins her new life how do you think she will adjust? What do you think her problems will be with adjusting? How would you react to the changes taking place?
2. Hannah is very concerned with having children, and the possibility that she may never have them is very real. How does this affect her and John’s marriage?
3. Hannah’s initial reaction to Deidre is dislike. Is Hannah’s first judgment warranted? Have you ever judged someone from a first impression and been wrong? Have you been right? Have you ever been judged based on a first impression?
4. Living in the uncharted territory of Australia would have been a very difficult task. John is excited about the adventure of having his own farm, but Hannah has a few reservations. Why do you think Hannah has more reservations than John? Would you be more like John or Hannah? Why?
5. The Australian outback presents its own fears and problems --- from escaped criminals to possible Aborigine attacks. How does Hannah handle the dangers the new land and farm bring? How would you handle those same dangers?
6. The idea of character and integrity is interwoven throughout the entire book. John and Hannah are people of integrity; however, Deidre’s character is questioned by her consistent blackmail. Do you think John’s decision to give in to Deidre’s demands was right? Do you believe that giving into these demands questioned John and Hannah’s integrity? What do Deidre’s demands say about her character?
7. Faith and trust are pervasive themes throughout this story. Hannah’s faith is tested by her apparent inability to have children, and both she and John’s faith are tested by Deidre’s excessive demands. How do you think these trials helped Hannah and John’s faith grow? Have you ever been through something that has strengthened your faith?
8. When John brings the orphan Thomas home without asking, Hannah is upset. Would you be upset if an orphan boy was brought to you without any warning? What changed Hannah’s opinion of Thomas?
9. After Deidre told the church about Hannah’s alleged past and Hannah responded by setting the story straight, each character had a separate reaction. What were John and Hannah’s reactions? How did this reflect their growth in trust and faith? What was the church’s reaction? What would your reaction be to Hannah’s story?
10. This book reflects on the goodness of God and his love, and living by simply trusting him. How have you experienced the goodness of God? Do you ever feel like not trusting God during hard times? How has God surprised you when you do trust him?