Swedish Again: Chapter-By-Chapter Guide
Questions for Understanding
- Why couldn’t Jenny get a same day passport at the airport?
- Who called Anna from Seattle the night she returned to Stockholm?
- What was Eun-joo’s nickname while growing up?
- Did Sinead and Anna enjoy each other’s company when they visited Seattle?
- Who took Anna to the airport train?
- How did she feel when she sat on the plane to leave Sweden?
Questions for Group Reflection and Discussion
- Let’s review what’s happening with all the kids, both American and Swedish at this point. How are Fionn and Sinead doing?
- What does Anna’s transition to moving back look like? How long does it take for the transition to be accomplished?
- Where does Anna fly to on May 4th (before Seattle) and why?
- At the end of the chapter, it seems that Anna is both exhausted and satisfied. Which events do you think led to each feeling?
- If you reached the end of this type of adventure, how do you think you would feel?
- Do you think it is significant that Michael is the one who sees Anna off? Why, or why not?
Ideas for Further Consideration
- This international family traveled a lot to meet each other at a wedding. Is this something typical in your family as well? Do people ever assemble from all over? If so, at what kind of events does this happen?
- Do you think Anna made the right decision in going back? Why, or why not?
- Anna says, “I had moved enough times in my life to know that each move changed me and that I wasn’t the same person today that I was when I left Seattle in 2015.” Do you agree? When we move, does it change us? How has this been true in your own life?
- At the very end, Anna tells herself she had no choice. Then she forces herself to focus on the future instead of the past. In which ways is this attitude typical of her way of dealing with emotions throughout the story? Can you relate to that, or do you face emotions differently?
Especially for English Language Learners
Key Words and Expressions:
“…she could reason herself out of depression.” = she could use logic to relieve her depression (p. 228)
“…suited her temperament perfectly.” = was a good match to her personality (p. 228)
“She stood cheesing up at the camera…” = She stood smiling like she was saying “Cheese” for the camera (p. 229)
“…would be able to handle regular school.” = would be able to do well and succeed in regular school. (p.228)
Gerunds and Infinitives
Verb forms are important in English, and one constant source of confusion is when to use a gerund (-ing form) and when to use an infinitive (to + plain verb.) This is a grammar point which usually requires memorization because some expressions use one while some use another. Let’s take a look at an explanation and some examples from this chapter.
Gerunds are verbs that act like nouns. They take the -ing form.
Example: Swimming is fun.
Example: I like shopping.
Example: We enjoy eating out.
These are verbs which begin with “to.”
Example: I need to go.
Example: We are required to attend.
Example: I am planning to move.
She was also four months’ pregnant and planning to move back to Canada a few days after the wedding. I felt sorry for her and wanted to help her during those busy days… (p. 224)
Since Korea required people to leave the country on the same passport they had entered with, showing them her American one did no good. (p. 225)
TIP: To learn gerunds and infinitives, pay attention to the word just before. Some words use gerunds, some use infinitives, and some use either one (either as an option or with a change in meaning.)
I like to swim.
I like swimming.
These mean the same thing.
I stopped smoking last year.
I saw an accident, so I stopped (my car) to see what was going on.
The first one means an action stopped (smoking). The second one means the person stopped moving in order to do something (to see).
Answers to Part 1
- It was Christmas Day.
- Bruce, Eun-joo’s former boyfriend.
- President of Mom’s Fanclub
- No, they argued almost the whole time.
- both exhausted and satisfied