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Jim and Louella’s Homemade Heart-fix Remedy Reader’s Guide

By Bertice Berry

Jim and Louella's Homemade Heart-fix Remedy by Bertice Berry

Jim and Louella’s Homemade Heart-fix Remedy Reader’s Guide

By Bertice Berry

Category: Fiction


The questions that follow are designed to enhance your discussion and personal reading of Jim and Louella’s Homemade Heart-Fix Remedy. We hope these questions will also lead you to further topics of inquiry about this rich tale and these vibrant characters.

Questions and Topics for Discussion

1. Louella’s first encounter with her extraordinary ability to see and hear the thoughts of those around her is at the farmer’s market with Mr. Stan and Mr. Blue. Louella approaches the two men and their issues very differently. Is her insight into how to approach the two men part of her ability to see into their minds, or did she possess this kind of sensitivity before getting the “gift”?

2. Early in the book, Jim observes that their ability to read minds and solve problems is “surely as good as it is hard.” What are some of the positive aspects for Jim and Louella? What are some of the negatives?

3. Jim and Louella have very different yet complementary personalities. How does Jim handle the “gift”? How does Jim’s approach to the people seeking his advice differ from Louella’s approach?

4. Why do Jim and Louella go so far out of their way to help Mae? Is it because of her past? Is it because she has never known real love, just a series of meaningless sexual encounters? Is it her ailing health?

5. Louella is at once proud and perplexed by her son Neal/Naim. In what ways does Louella admire him? How do his beliefs reflect her own? How do they differ?

6. What does the return of Jim’s brother John mean to Jim and Louella? What is the significance of his character? How does the story change when he comes into the picture?

7. How do Jim and Louella’s neighbors’ problems in love differ? How are they similar? What common threads run through some of the stories?

8. Of the people who seek out Jim and Louella’s help, who are the most sympathetic characters, and why? Who are the least sympathetic?

9. What role does forgiveness play in the lives of all the characters, including Jim and Louella?

10. How much of what happens to Jim and Louella and their friends is predestined and how much do they control through their own actions? How much of your life do you think is predetermined?

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