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When You Were Mine

When You Were Mine

For Ages: 14 and up
  • reading group guide
An intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told—narrated by the girl Romeo was supposed to love.

Rosaline knows that she and Rob are destined to be together. Rose has been waiting for years for Rob to kiss her—and when he finally does, it’s perfect. But then Juliet moves back to town. Juliet, who used to be Rose’s best friend. Juliet, who now inexplicably hates her. Juliet, who is gorgeous, vindictive, and a little bit crazy...and who has set her sights on Rob. He doesn’t stand a chance.

Rose is devastated over losing Rob to Juliet. And when rumors start swirling about Juliet’s instability, her neediness, and her threats of suicide, Rose starts to fear not only for Rob’s heart, but also for his life. Because Shakespeare may have gotten the story wrong, but we all still know how it ends.
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  • Simon Pulse | 
  • 368 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442433144 | 
  • April 2013 | 
  • Grades 9 and up
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Rebecca Serle on When You Were Mine

An intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told—narrated by the girl Romeo was supposed to love.

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Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions for

When You Were Mine
By Rebecca Serle

1.Consider Olivia’s question: “If you could know your entire life now . . . would you?” How would each character answer this question? Would his or her response change from the beginning to the end of the book? How would you decide? Would your answer have been different in your past?

2.In the beginning of the book, Rosaline struggles to make things different with Rob, and the result is awkward. What exactly is the problem? Is Rosaline trying to escape fate? Was it not meant to be or are they not trying hard enough?

3.In the culmination of the novel we witness a variety of perspectives on the debate between chance versus fate as a handful of characters, including Olivia, Rosaline, and Rosaline’s mother, offer their opinions. How would you describe each character’s judgment on the idea of fate? Do you believe the author sides with one character’s opinion more than another? If so, which character and why?

4.Physical locations play a significant role in the story. For example, Rosaline and Rob live next door to each other; the girls use Malibu as an escape; and the cliffs become a site of friendship, romance, and tragedy. In what ways do physical settings influence the plot of the novel? How do the physical locations of scenes affect the themes of the novel, including those of chance, free will, and fate? Wh see more

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About the Author

Rebecca Serle
Photograph © Ann Molen

Rebecca Serle

Rebecca Serle is a full-time writer, which means she gets to wear pajamas to work. She went to the University of Southern California, then got her MFA from the New School in NYC. (She likes New York much more than LA, but don’t tell anyone that.) Rebecca loves shiny hair, coffee, yoga, and pretending to be British. She is the author of When You Were Mine and The Edge of Falling. Find out more at RebeccaSerle.com.

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