The Carolina Emerald Discussion Questions

•  Cooper accused Kim of harboring prejudices against his family. Have you ever had an experience where your thoughts or behavior were dictated by existing (known or unknown) prejudices? Were you surprised? How did you deal with it?

•  In the Prologue, Kim witnessed a class of children shun a boy dressed in old clothes. As a child, did you see discrimination based on income, race, social class? How did that influence your own behavior toward the child? How did the experience affect you as an adult?

•  What were your thoughts when Kim first visited the Hicks family? Did you fear for Kim’s life? Why or why not?

•  Though we in the U.S. believe we don’t have a socio-economic caste system, Kim witnesses several episodes of upper class discrimination against the lower classes. What advice would you give to the Hicks family for overcoming this prejudice?

•  Even though Sheriff Spitz was a minor character in the story, the author chose to not depict him as a stereotypical redneck cop. What do you think of the author’s decision? How did that decision affect the story?

•  Were you surprised to learn that emeralds can be found in North Carolina? Have you hunted for gemstones in the United States?

•  Cleopatra’s favorite gem was emerald. Do you have a favorite gemstone? What draws you to it?

•  What was your favorite part of the book?

•  Who were your favorite characters? What traits attracted you to them?

• Just for Fun: The author uses the two dogs to provide comic relief in the book. Yet Rorschach clearly plays a major role in Kim’s life. What are the dogs or pets in your life? How do they help you cope with life’s ups and downs?

The Carolina Emerald: Kimberley West Gemstone Mystery Book 3