Anne Perry's No Graves As Yet
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A Novel of World War One 
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Reading Group Questions

for No Graves As Yet


 

1. Historians agree that World War One was the end of an old order, a distinct rupture with the Victorian and Edwardian Eras--and the true beginning of modern times. How is that viewpoint dramatized in the first chapter of No Graves As Yet?

2. No Graves As Yet begins a five-novel series set in World War One--with each novel dramatizing the events of a single year, from 1914 to 1918. Although each story is separate and complete unto itself, some plot threads will not be resolved until the final pages of the last book in the quintet. Having read No Graves As Yet, you realize that one mystery (regarding the death of Sebastian Allard) is solved, but that other mysteries (e.g., the provenance of the secret document) will continue. Any conjecture at this stage on what lies ahead for Joseph Reavley and his family as they investigate those unsolved mysteries?

3. Beyond providing Anne Perry with the inspiration for her title, what plot-specific and thematic significance is there in the G. K. Chesterton poem ("Elegy in a Country Churchyard") that serves as the novel's epigraph?

4. Joseph Reavley, the protagonist of this novel, first appeared in "Heroes," Anne Perry's Edgar Award-winning short story. Discuss the ways in which Joseph, as depicted in "Heroes," is both similar to and different from the same character in No Graves As Yet.

5. How is the theme of faith--both religious and secular faith--manifested in the novel? Which characters are most reliant upon their faith? For which characters is faith not an issue? And what distinctions can one draw between the "faithful" and the "faithless"?

6. Discuss the implications of Sir Edward Grey's famous utterance that concludes the novel--"The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.''--and Joseph Reavley's response to that assessment


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