READING GROUP STUDY GUIDE
1. In Nocturne, the two main characters are actually the only two characters in the novel. Why do you think the author chose not to include any other characters in the story?
Have you ever read a novel like this before?
2. Discuss the many things that Michael and Nicole have in common as well as their differences. What draws them together? How do they complement each other? Do you think that Michael
and Nicole are the love of each other's life?
3. Why do Nicole and Michael argue so much at the beginning of the novel? Have you ever felt attracted to someone and yet felt the need to disguise it?
If so, why did you make this decision?
4. Do you believe in true love? Why or why not?
5. Both Michael and Nicole are accomplished pianists. Why do you think the author chose to make music such an important part of the novel? And what do you think it is about
the nocturne in particular (a short, lyrical piece of music of a dreamy or pensive character especially for the piano) that is so important to the characters' love story?
6. Did you like Michael and Nicole, and find them sympathetic? Have you ever been attracted to a person that your friends or family thought was wrong for you? How did you handle that situation?
7. Nicole and Michael fall in love very quickly. Have you ever had a romance like this where you fell in love so quickly and intensely? Was it short-lived or did it
turn into an enduring relationship?
8. Discuss the clues that mount up in the first half of the book before Nicole realizes Michael's dark secret. How would you feel if you had been in Nicole's shoes?
9. Discuss the scenes that explore Michael's back story. How do all the parts of his history contribute to the man he is today?
Did any of the revelations surprise you? What does Michael's back story say about him as a person?
10. Describe all the aspects of the property that Michael has built for himself in the Colorado mountains. Why does he call it his "sanctuary"? Did you find it appealing?
Do you think you could live in isolation the way Michael does, when the surroundings are so spectacular? Or are you too social?
11. What was your reaction to the secret building on Michael's property?
12. Forbidden love is one of the most enduring themes in great literature. What other great love stories have you read? Compare and contrast them with Nocturne.
13. Have you ever experienced the kind of loneliness Michael has? How did you deal with it? Has there ever been a time in your life you wished you could just pick up and
move away from everyone you know?
14. Discuss Nicole's emotional growth throughout the novel. How would you describe the crisis at the heart of Nicole's character?
15. The two lovers spend four magical days together and are both utterly transformed by the experience. In what ways do they each grow and change? Have you ever had a transformative experience? What was it? Discuss what you learned.