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Reader’s Den

Reader's Den: "The Elegance of the Hedgehog"

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I hope you enjoyed reading The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery this month.  Here are some questions to think about, but feel free to post thoughts and comments about what you liked or didn't like about the novel.

The Hedgehog., Digital ID 411954, New York Public Library

  • How would you characterize this novel?  What do you think the author's goal was in writing this book?
  • Since the two main characters share the same critique on the upper class in Paris, do you think some New Yorkers may share the same views here?
  • For two people who have strong opinions on those around them, particularly the "masks" that people in society wear, why is it that Renee and Paloma feel that they should hide who they are?  Why do they conform to society's expectations?
  • What do you think draws Mr. Ozu to both Renee and Paloma?  What role does he play in the novel?

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