35 pages 1 hour read

Mary Beth Keane

Ask Again, Yes

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2019

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Essay Topics


The novel explores the implications of history and the need to confront the past honestly and openly. Compare and contrast two characters whose approach to history is radically different. What is the value of confronting the past? Or is denial a better strategy?


Examine the shooting of Francis Gleeson in Part 1. How does sharing the narrative from multiple perspectives enrich the storytelling? What is gained—or lost—by compelling the reader to piece together what happened from a variety of accounts over more than 100 pages?


Research Molly Bloom’s soliloquy from James Joyce’s masterwork Ulysses. How does that literary allusion shape your interpretation of Keane’s closing section?