Awaken Reading Guide questions:
1. How does the image on the cover of Awaken relate to messages and characters in the story?
2. Can you see our future headed in the direction of Awaken? In what ways? Do you see any similarities now?
3. Maddie is overwhelmed with many natural elements in the book: water, fire, sunsets, even homemade food. Why do you think the natural world shocks her so much of the time?
4. If you lived in Maddie and Justin’s world, would you be a DS4 Dropout, or would you be happy in digital school?
5. Although Kevin Freeman is the antagonist in the story, can you sympathize with him? Does he have any likable qualities?
6. How does the title of the book illustrate themes and characters in the story?
7. Kevin loves Maddie, but he also tries to control her. What do you think he cares about more: his daughter, or his job?
8. Maddie’s parents have very different views on technology. Why do you think the author chose to make them so opposite?
9. Justin grew up without his parents around and he claims it didn’t affect him. Do you agree, or do you think it has affected his relationships?
10. Maddie discusses how digital school came about: by increasing violence in public schools. Do you ever feel like violence is an issue at your school?
11. Justin claims people will never be powerful enough to destroy the planet. Do you agree, or do you think humans have that capability?
12. Maddie starts writing in a journal when she turns seventeen. How do her entries show that she is “waking up?”
13. Clare stands out to Maddie as being a great friend. What characteristics does Clare have that are strong (and unique) in Maddie’s world?
14. This book takes place about fifty years in the future. Where do you see the future in fifty years (the environment, schools, relationships, culture, technology…)?
15. Maddie dares Erin to turn off all of her digital devices for a day. Do you think you could go a day without using any digital devices? What would be the hardest thing not to use?
16. Elaine told Maddie that you shouldn’t have to rely on another person to make you feel whole, that you shouldn’t have to need someone. Do you agree or disagree with her?
17. Justin points out computers can be addictive. Do you know anyone addicted to video games, Facebook or texting?
18. At one point in the book, Justin told Maddie: “Sometimes the more disoriented you are, the more clearly you start to see.” What do you think he means by this?
19. After reading this book, did it make you consider any of your own habits or values? Like what?
20. Which of the two do you prefer?
Facebook or Face-to-Face
Texting or Talking
Playing virtual sports or Playing real sports
Shopping online or Shopping in stores
Laptop/computer or Pen and Paper
Ebooks or Paper Books
Online classes or Face-to-face classes
Emails or Letters
Video games or Board games
Reading news online or Magazines and newspapers
Look at your answers. How digitalized are you?