Study Guide

The Demon's Lexicon Love

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Huey Lewis said it best:

The power of love is a curious thing,
Make a one man weep, make another man sing,
Change a hawk to a little white dove,
More than a feeling—that's the power of love.

All right. Maybe Huey Lewis didn't say it best, but you have to admit these lyrics are kind of fitting for The Demon's Lexicon. After all, love does make Alan weep and sing, and for Nick it's definitely curious. Add in all the bird imagery and the fact that love has the power to convince a whole lot of people to do a whole lot of things they otherwise wouldn't (like risk their lives and tolerate hair-ruffling), and you might just think this '80s song was written for this story… even though it hit the scene about twenty years early.

Questions About Love

  1. In what ways is Alan motivated by love? Which of his actions and choices are directly connected to his feelings of love for another character? And what about everyone else? What things are Nick, Mae, Jamie, and Olivia motivated to do in the name of love?
  2. In Chapter 15, Nick says that he doesn't know anything about human love. Do you think this is true? Why or why not?
  3. Who do you think is more capable of feeling human love: Nick or Black Arthur? Explain your answer.
  4. Love motivates many of the characters in the book to do things they might not otherwise do. Are all of these things positive? Is anyone motivated to take negative or hurtful actions in the name of love? Explain.
  5. Sometimes love can knock you silly. Have you ever done anything ridiculous for love? How about something brave? Something you're proud of? Something you regret? Explain one or more of these situations. And remember, love comes in many forms. You can feel it for friends, family, pets, boyfriends, girlfriends—sometimes even people you've never met.

Chew on This

Love can only motivate people to do positive things. If a person claims to have done something negative for love (like hurt someone or steal something), then love wasn't the real motivating factor. The real motivating factor was more likely something along the lines of grief, greed, obsession, or vengeance.

Nick doesn't believe that he knows anything about human love, but in truth the majority of his actions are motivated by his love for his brother.

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