1. Discuss how Wiersema weaves together the two storylines in
this novel. How did alternating between the two affect your
reading? What are some differences between the two narrative
2. Share your thoughts on Chris and Jacqui's relationship, and
the things that have brought them to the brink of separation. What
sort of resolution, if any, do they come to by the end of the
novel? What do you think the future holds in store?
3. What does Matthias's presence mean to David as he fulfills
his quest in To the Four Directions?
4. Talk about how selflessness, and self-sacrifice, are
exhibited in this novel.
5. Some reviewers have characterized Bedtime
Story as a horror novel - the story of a parent's
worst nightmare - while others would consider it a work of fantasy,
or straight-up literary fiction. How useful are genre labels when
you are discussing the novels you read? Would one label or another
ever deter you from trying a book?
6. Explore the many parallels between the tale of the king and
queen and Dafyd's quest at the heart of To the Four
Directions, and the "real-life" story of Lazarus and Cora
Took and Chris's search for answers.
7. Chris's search for information about Lazarus Took turns into
a crash course in Victorian and twentieth-century occultism. Talk
about how Wiersema uses historical details about ritualistic
societies like Took's to ramp up the tension in Bedtime
8. How has David changed by the end of the novel? What do you
think his return to everyday life will be like?
9. E-mail, newspaper accounts and columns, journal entries . . .
In addition to the novel within this novel, the written word plays
a major role in the unfolding of this story. And the fact that
David, who is struggling with dyslexia in real life, can in fact
read is something he hides from Captain Bream. Talk about the
importance of writing - and being able to read - in Bedtime