Discuss the significance of cleaning and sweeping in the novel. What does it mean that Winnie comes home to clean her house after Helen tells her she must release her secrets?

Discuss the novel as a feminist text? Is Winnie Louie a feminist? Is Amy Tan?

How did Winnie's mother disappear? Did she commit suicide? Did she simply abandon her marriage? Did she fall ill and die? Does the reader ever have an answer to this question and is the answer to this question important?

Discuss the differences and similarities between Helen's children and Winnie's children. What are their shared experiences? What separates them?

Discuss the role that Phil, Cleo, and Tessa play in the novel.