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The Charlatan’s Boy Reader’s Guide

By Jonathan Rogers

The Charlatan's Boy by Jonathan Rogers


Questions and Topics for Discussion


Do we have any legends in our own world like the feechiefolk? How would you feel if you found out they were real?


If you lived in Grady’s world, would you rather be a drover, a villager, a show person, or a feechie? Why?


Grady spends his whole life thinking no one loves him, but really his true family has loved him and prayed for him every day of his life. How is this like God’s love for us?


How has growing up with only Floyd for family affected Grady’s view of the world? Think about his experience in the village classroom—how is he different from the village children? How is he similar?


How did you feel about Grady’s decision not to stay with Short Fronie? What would you have done in his position?


How does Grady feel about being a charlatan? What does this say about him? How do you feel about him being a charlatan?


At the end of chapter 5, Grady says, “So here’s what I’d like to know: if a feller feels honest, if he wants to be honest, but he don’t get much chance to talk honest or act honest, is he a honest feller or not?” How would you answer his question? Do you think Grady is an honest person?


Grady spends the whole book referring to himself as ugly. When he finds out where he really comes from, how does his perspective of his appearance change?  Why? What qualities do you share with your family?


In Chapter 13, Grady says, “I’ve got to love somebody. And I got nobody but Floyd.” What do you think of Floyd? What, if anything, do you admire about him? Do you think he ever loved Grady at all?


How has Barbary’s life been similar to Grady’s? What does he learn from her?


Through most of his story, Grady longs for things he doesn’t have and cannot have. There is a lot of hurt in longing like that. What (if any) good comes out of that kind of longing?


The Charlatan’s Boy is a book about belonging—or not belonging. Where do you belong? How would your view of yourself be different if you felt you didn’t belong anywhere?

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