Discussion questions for Subversive

Discussing the first novel in the Clandestine Magic series? A few questions—with spoilers—to get you started:

1. Peter Blackwell is trying to carry out a plan to protect lives. But part of that involves making Beatrix Harper work for him against her will and luring her into doing something illegal. Is it ever ethical to harm one person in service of helping many? Do you think his assumption that he can’t pull his plan off alone is correct? How might he have gained Beatrix’s help willingly without putting himself at risk of arrest?

2. At the start of the novel, Beatrix feels powerless. Do you think she feels more powerful by the end—or less so?

3. The book is set in 2020, but it’s a society that hasn’t progressed much since 1920. If magic were suddenly introduced into the world now, how do you think it would change mores, technology and politics? Would you expect more progress or less?

4. After they take magical Vows, Beatrix and Peter see things from the other’s perspective, whether they want to or not. How does that change them? Which of them do you think changes more, or needs to change more?