Selected by Indie Booksellers for the Indie Next List.


  1. On the first page of this novel is a quote:

    Often, in the cosseted quarters of a museum, we forget that every work of ancient art is a survivor, a representative of untold numbers of similar artworks that perished. This triumphant exhibition makes us remember, while demonstrating that every survivor saves much more than just itself: long strands of culture, identity and history waiting to be woven back together. – Roberta Smith writing in the New York Times about the exhibit: Silent Survivors of Afghanistan’s 4,000 Tumultuous Years  

    How do you think that quote relates to both the theme of this book and the subject of reincarnation?

  2. Who do you think does own art? Should the cultural heritage of a piece of artwork determine what museum it finally winds up in? Should the Metropolitan museum have returned Hypnos to Greece? To Iran?

  3. The main characters in the book – Lucian and Emeline are both faced with choices between art and personal life. What are some of these dilemmas, and how does each character resolve or at least experience them?

  4. How does the myth  of Hypnos, the Greek God of Sleep, figure into the story and how does the author use that myth to mirror the novel’s plot.

  5. The author Laurie R. King says that the Rose has told a story built on the idea that saving love is indistinguishable from saving the world.  How does that theme show itself and how does it resolve itself?