The concept of "truth" and its necessity in life is a bit of a gray area for people like Dr. Pellinore Warthrop in The Monstrumologist. The very nature of his profession calls for obfuscations aplenty in order to keep his actions secret (and therefore protect the innocent people who don't need to know there are terrifying monsters surrounding them). It's no wonder, then, that Will Henry is a bit confused whenever he's confronted with ambiguous situations that force him to decide whether the truth, an approximation of the truth, or an outright lie is called for.
Questions About Lies and Deceit
Dr. Warthrop gives Will Henry contradicting advice about lying. According to him, when is it appropriate to tell a lie? What patterns do you notice as you examine specific incidents?
Does Will Henry follow Dr. Warthrop's instructions about lying? Is there ever a moment when he knowingly goes against his advice? If so, when and why? If not, why not?
If you had to rate the major characters in order by how they value honesty, how would they rank and why?
When his parents argue about "lying for Dr. Warthrop," whose side do you think Will Henry would agree with more? Why?
Chew on This
This book shows that lying is never an acceptable practice—the truth must be told at all costs.
This book argues that there definitely occasions where a falsehood is justified and therefore necessary.