character described herself as “stubborn”, “excitable”,
“willful” and “petulant”. She was also painfully insecure. Were
her motivations, reactions, choices and decisions throughout the book
understandable based on her temperament? Did you like her? Why or why not?
of Anne Boleyn’s legacies was the Church of England. Had she not married
Henry VIII, England might have continued to be Roman Catholic. What kinds
of thoughts, feelings and questions about religion would you imagine Anne
had, knowing she was the primary cause of this social upheaval -- that
Henry VIII was breaking with Rome and introducing a new religion primarily
to legitimize his marriage to her? Do you think “Threads’” depiction
of her confusion, panic and crisis of faith was true to what the real Anne
Boleyn might have experienced?
VIII had married Anne solely to produce a male heir. Anne’s success at
doing this was critical, but completely outside of her control. When
Elizabeth was born, Anne felt no maternal love toward her, and in fact
noted that she allowed someone to take the baby to her wet nurse “while
the servants gathered up the linens and whisked away the bloody mess I’d
made.” The “bloody mess” refers not only to the linens, but to the
infant Elizabeth. How did you react to Anne’s cold feelings toward her
daughter, and her later reflections on those feelings? How did you react
to her later “punishment" for having failed her daughter?
of dramatizing her plight during the execution scene, Anne focuses on very
personal, sometimes practical, sometimes fanciful or mundane things. Did
that scene increase or decrease the sense of tragedy?
book contains a number of “threads”, which tie the various situations,
lifetimes and people together throughout time. Some of these are
important, such as Anne’s sixth finger. Some are very small, like the
recurring reference to the color vermilion. Can you identify any others?
of the main characters represents a different form of love and a different
type of relationship. What are they?
you catch the identity of Anne’s fool in a previous lifetime? (Note: The
fool was her son Peter, in Flanders.) Were you able to identify Maggie,
the thread of that relationship, and its significance? (Note: Maggie was
Princess Mary, identifiable by her attempts to train dogs to do tricks.)
If anyone has read “Threads” twice, did they catch details and
insights into the characters they may have missed the first time?
were the primary and secondary reasons for Anne's experiences in Flanders?
Can you think of more than two reasons? What did a nearly impoverished,
happy, fulfilling life teach her, once she'd experienced an unhappy life
amid untold riches and power as Anne Boleyn?
are your thoughts about “The Voice”? Did you find its guidance of Anne
to be sound?
changes did you notice in the narration style as Anne moved through her
various lifetimes? Was the narration appropriate to the character?
your feelings toward any of the characters change after you learned their
experiences and motivations from earlier lifetimes? Who and why?
Anne’s story and her spiritual development move forward, her memories
move further backward until she finds herself facing the root of most of
her problems, in ancient Egypt. By that time, she is ready to confront
those problems and deal with them. Did you feel that her past life
memories and lessons were effectively matched to the situations she was
addressing in her lifetime as Anne Boleyn? Did you like any particular
lifetime more than the others?
the way Anne is during each of her various lifetimes. In what ways does
she progress from lifetime to lifetime, and what specific lessons does she
learn? What core characteristics remain unchanged from lifetime to
lifetime? What characteristics changed or were suppressed because of
Anne suffered grief that she clearly earned, did you feel satisfaction in
her punishment, or empathy for her pain?
is less a story about two historical characters than it is a story about
forgiving the unforgivable. It follows the course of Anne’s efforts to
forgive Henry from the moment of her execution until 400 years later, when
she encounters him again, and is finally faced with deciding whether or
not to forgive him. Do you think Anne’s reluctance to forgive is
understandable? Do you think she ultimately succeeds and forgives Henry?
kind of future do you see for Anne and Henry, based on the issues they
still have between them, and the kind of people they are at the time they
meet again in 1970?
kind of foreshadowing throughout the book has given you clues about what
Anne can expect from her modern day lifetime?