Some Suggested Discussion Questions for Saving Hamlet 

(Book groups and classrooms: I’d love to hear what questions you’ve used to discuss Saving Hamlet!

  1. How does Emma’s haircut change her view of herself? What does this have to do with gender expression?
  2. Could someone else have opened the time portal, or is there something specific about Emma that lets her travel first?
  3. What are the problems with the Elizabethan production of Hamlet, and what are the problems for the modern production? Are there similarities in their struggles?
  4.  Why does Lulu stop talking to Emma?
  5. Have you ever been in the middle of a friendship fight, as Stanley is between Emma and Lulu? How does it feel?
  6. Emma has a lot of anxious feelings. What kinds of coping techniques does she do to try to feel calm again?
  7. Compare/contrast the directorial styles of Brandon and Shakespeare.
  8. What examples of sexism do you see in the Elizabethan world? What examples of sexism do you see in Emma’s modern world?
  9. What similarities do you see between the characters of Hamlet, and the characters of Saving Hamlet?
  10. Do you agree with Lulu’s final opinion of Ophelia: that she is not a sexist character, but an example of sexism? Why/why not?
  11. Why do you think Josh auditioned for the play?
  12. How does Emma’s leadership change by the end of the book?
  13. Emma has three different crushes. What sets apart her feelings for Josh from her other crushes?
  14. At the end of the book, Emma wonders what theatre (and Shakespeare) has to do with all of her and her friends lives and problems. What do you think?