A Quiet Storm
Rikki Moore was always the star of the family, easily outshining her younger sister, Stacy, at every turn. Smart, kind, and beautiful, it was no surprise when Rikki met and married the perfect man -- pediatrician Matt Dresden. Her students at 59th Street Elementary School adored her, the church matrons solicited her help on every committee, and everyone wanted the golden couple to put in an appearance at their parties. Stacy? She was just the overweight little sister who couldn't get her love life together.
But the world didn't know about the storms that rippled just beneath the surface of Rikki's image of perfection. Ever since she was a teenager there were emotional breakdowns and obsessive behaviors -- secrets that Stacy was left to bear alone. Folks whispered, but they didn't know. When Rikki's husband, Matt, mysteriously disappears, however, the Moore family's carefully constructed image comes crashing down.
Reading Group Guide
1. Religion is a persistent theme throughout A Quiet Storm and Seventh-Day Adventism is the cultural backdrop for the book. Is religion, as it is seen in the Moore family, a burden or a blessing? What do the biblical excerpts from Rikki's journal mean in the context of the unfolding story? In reference to the characters' developments?
2. In chapter 5, look at Jacques's shocked reaction to the disparity in how the sisters are treated. Similarly, look at the paragraph in chapter 6 that begins "I told Mommy about my conversation...," especially the paragraph's last four lines. Explore the concept of "favorite" or "spoiled" children and why you think Rikki gets such special treatment from her mother and father. Why is Stacy considered last, if she is considered at all? Explain whether or not you think Stacy's mother cares for her less than she does for Rikki, and why.
3. How does Rikki's family react (in chapters 5 and 6) to her attempt to kill herself? What did Rikki want when she tried to kill herself? What message is she sending to her family? Discuss the Moore family's reaction to the event, including Pastor Phillips's "exorcism." What was your reaction?
4. A Quiet Storm explores family and personal guilt. Look at the paragraph in chapter 7 beginning, "In my heart..." after Rikki describes her dreams to Stacy, and at Rikki's statement "I'm not worthy of God' see more