Study Guide

Brooklyn: A Novel Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

By Colm Tóibín

Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

Eilis Lacey has more dreams than she knows what to do with. She dreams of becoming a classy, glamorous woman, like her big sister Rose. She dreams of having a husband who loves her and treats her like a princess. And she dreams of being an accountant, which, as far as dreams go, is actually pretty low-stakes (and financially responsible).

Regardless, Eilis quickly realizes that simply having dreams is a lot easier than making them come true, her forward momentum in Brooklyn halted by what we can only diagnose as a near-fatal case of FOMO.

Questions About Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

  1. Why is Tony obsessed with planning for the future?
  2. Are Eilis' expectations for America met? Explain.
  3. Why is Eilis hesitant about making a commitment to Tony?
  4. Does Eilis have concrete dreams for her future? Explain.

Chew on This

Eilis is hesitant to make a commitment to Tony because she doesn't like the feeling of having her future potential limited.

Eilis is hesitant to make a commitment to Tony because she has her own ambitions, such as her desire to become an accountant.

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