Half Upon a Time

   Half Upon a Time by James Riley

In the village of Giant's Hand Jack's grandfather has been pushing him to find a princess and get married, so when a young lady falls out of the sky wearing a shirt that says "Punk Princess," and she tells Jack that her grandmother, who looks suspiciously like the long-missing Snow White, has been kidnapped, Jack decides to help her.

Discussion Questions

  1. Who is Jack’s father? His grandfather?
  2. Who does Jack think May’s grandmother is? Why does he think that?
  3. Jack, May, and Phillip are on a quest. What is their quest?
  4. What happens the first time Jack and May fall asleep? How do they get away?
  5. How do they meet Phillip? What is he doing? What fairy tale does he belong to?
  6. What or who is the Eye? What does he give Jack?
  7. Who do they meet in the Black Forest?
  8. What happens when they find the mirror?
  9. Who is Merriweather? How does she know May?
  10. Who is Malevolent? How does she help the trio?
  11. What happens at the Palace of the Snow Queen? What truth is revealed?
  12. Jack and May are both strong characters. How are they alike? How are they different? How does Phillip fit into the story? What role does he play? How does he affect the relationship between Jack and May?
  13. What do you predict will happen in the future? Which boy will betray May? Which will die?
  14. What is the meaning of the title of the book?
  15. What fairy tale characters are present in the book? Which fairy tales do they belong to?
  16. Is May a character from a fairy tale? Who do you think she is?

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