Welcome to the world of The Thursday Murder Club, where a group of elderly retirees come together to solve cold case murders with their sharp wits and decades of life experience. This charming and witty mystery novel by Richard Osman has captured the hearts of readers all over the world, becoming a New York Times bestseller and sparking the interest of book clubs everywhere.
If you’re looking for a book that will keep you on the edge of your seat while also making you laugh out loud, The Thursday Murder Club is the perfect choice. But once you’ve finished reading, you might find yourself wanting to discuss the insane twists (and a few red herrings) with your fellow book lovers. That’s where I come in.
In this blog post, I have compiled a list of thought-provoking book club questions for The Thursday Murder Club that will guide your discussion and help you delve deeper into the world of crime.
From questions about the characters and their motivations to puzzles that will test your detective skills, these questions are sure to spark an engaging conversation. Dive on in and get ready to take a closer look at Richard Osman’s debut.
The post might contain affiliate links. For more information, read our disclosure. Also, these questions contain spoilers.
Book Club Questions for The Thursday Murder Club
- The characters’ past experiences with crime play a significant role in their involvement in The Thursday Murder Club. Joyce, for example, is a retired nurse who used to work in a hospital and has seen her fair share of suspicious behavior. Ron, on the other hand, used to be a union member and was involved in numerous negotiations with management, giving him a keen sense of reading people’s motives. Elizabeth, as a former intelligence agent, has a natural instinct for investigation and problem-solving. Ibrahim was a psychiatrist, and his experience in dealing with people’s inner workings is of immense value to the group.
How important do you think a character’s work experience matters in solving a murder case? Is it a necessary factor?
- When Elizabeth pretended that she has had her bag stolen and insisted on speaking to a female officer, did you for once think that she was trying to manipulate Donna in order to get her involved in the murder case?
- The Garden of Eternal Rest is a peaceful and tranquil place, and the idea of its demolition creates a sense of foreboding for the characters. Additionally, it introduces new characters into the story, such as Father Matthew and Ian Ventham, who have conflicting interests.
How does the conflict over the Garden of Eternal Rest add to the tension in the story?
- Penny is the co-founder of The Thursday Murder Club and has left behind her diary, which contains clues and information that are crucial to the investigation. Her husband, John, is also a source of information and provides insights into her personality, which helps the characters understand her better.
If Penny was not there in the novel, how would the story have been different?
- The photograph left next to Tony’s body is significant because it provides a possible clue to the motive behind the murder. The photograph depicts three men, Tony, Ron’s son Jason, and a man named Bobby.
When you read the novel, did you think, by any means, that they could have been involved in the murder? Or, owing to reading murder mysteries, it was just another red herring?
- The group’s approach to investigating the murder differs significantly from that of the police. The characters use their diverse backgrounds and experiences to gather information and interpret evidence, often using unorthodox methods, such as tricking police officers or pretending to be senile.
Coming to senility, do you think that, in some cases, it’s a good way to obtain information? Or do you think it’s unethical and unprofessional? Also, do you think that the other options, like not being bound by the same rules and regulations as the police, add to the group’s advantage?
- The Thursday Murder Club is an interesting take on the traditional detective-led mystery genre. Do you think that their approach to solving a murder case could be adapted by professional investigative teams in real life?
What do you think are the pros and cons of using this unconventional method of investigation? Do you think that every city where the crime rate is high should have such unique clubs, even if they are classified?
- How does the protest against the demolition of the Garden of Eternal Rest reflect the characters’ values and beliefs, and what does it reveal about the novel’s themes? Do you think it highlights their commitment to justice and fairness, as they believe that the cemetery should be protected and preserved at all costs?
Also, do you think this was a fight for a sense of community and solidarity to fight together against Ian’s greed and disregard for tradition?
- How does Elizabeth’s decision to keep Bobby’s secrets in exchange for his cooperation with the police reflect her character and her approach to justice?
Do you think it shows her pragmatism and her willingness to make deals and compromises in order to achieve her goals?
- The relationship between Joyce and Bernard develops slowly throughout the novel as they bond over their shared love of the cemetery and their memories of their respective spouses. It reveals the theme of aging and companionship, as both characters are widowed and looking for connection and meaning in their lives.
- Matthew’s story about his past at the church reveals a more vulnerable and emotional side to his character. It explains why he returned to Coopers Chase and why he is so protective of Maggie’s grave. It also shows that he was willing to sacrifice his title and status for love, which humanizes him and makes him more relatable to the reader.
What’s your take on it? Do you think it gives Matthew a more sympathetic portrayal and brings out his true motivations?
- Elizabeth’s confrontation with John and Penny highlights the theme of justice by showing the consequences of taking it into one’s own hands. It suggests that justice is not always black and white and that people can be driven to extremes when they feel that the system has failed them. It also raises questions about the morality of taking revenge and the impact it can have on both the victim and the perpetrator.
If you liked this set of book club questions, here are some other options for you to explore.
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The Dutch House: A captivating dark tale spanning five decades, following the resilient siblings Danny and Maeve as they navigate a tumultuous journey from wealth to poverty, relying on their unbreakable bond to overcome the haunting ghosts of their past.
The Giver of Stars: In Depression-era America, five extraordinary women embark on a remarkable journey through the Kentucky mountains, defying convention to deliver books and change lives. A breathtaking tale of friendship, love, and the pursuit of the extraordinary.