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The Gun Seller

Reading Group Guide

    The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for discussion of Hugh Laurie's The Gun Seller. We hope that these ideas will enrich your discussion and increase your enjoyment of the book. Discussion Questions
    1. Hugh Laurie makes deft comic use of names and nicknames, such as the Carls, Murdah, and the deadly helicopter called "The Graduate." Name some of your favorites.
    2. Who is "the gun seller" of the novel's title?
    3. One reviewer wrote that The Gun Seller is "certainly the first novel to combine The Day of the Jackal with The Code of the Woosters." What other literary or cinematic comparisons does The Gun Seller bring to mind?
    4. To enjoy The Gun Seller, do you think a reader must be familiar with traditional spy novels? Why or why not?
    5. Part of the way through The Gun Seller, Sarah Woolf stops being preceded by the scent of Nina Ricci's Fleur de Fleurs. What might this suggest? Discuss ways the author marks the shifting nature of Thomas Lang's relationship to Sarah.
    6. Discuss how much Solomon knew about Graduate Studies and when he knew it.
    7. Note some of the ways Laurie sends up clichés, for instance: "She turned towards me and narrowed her eyes....Narrowed them horizontally, not vertically."
    8. How has Laurie altered your opinion of Volvos or Fiat Pandas?
    9. According to The Gun Seller, why do diplomats end up with all the world's best real estate?
    10. Lang says that "stepping into an open-top sports car driven by a beautiful woman....feels like you're climbing into a metaphor." How does Laurie get the reader to climb in, buckle up and enjoy the ride in this meta-spy novel?

About the Author

Hugh Laurie
Photo Credit: Ian White