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A Wizard of Earthsea

A Wizard of Earthsea


by Ursula K. Le Guin

A Wizard of Earthsea Questions

  1. Earthsea is a fantasy world where magic works, but are there other ways that this world differs from ours? How does Le Guin show that this world is different?
  2. What about Earthsea's system of magic? It seems to follow some very rigid rules, but are there times when it seems to not follow rules? Are there times when the magic appears to be unexplainable? How do you feel about those times?
  3. How does A Wizard of Earthsea compare to other fantasy novels you've read? You could take two different books and compare something they have in common. For instance, if you've read Harry Potter, how does Hogwarts compare to the school of magic on Roke? Or if you've read The Name of the Wind, how does the magic surrounding true names compare in the books?
  4. Some of the later books in the series focus more on women and what it's like to be a woman in this world, but what did you think of the women in this book? How do you read this book when many of the main characters are men, and only a few women show up as minor characters?
  5. Names are important to magic on Earthsea, but do any of these characters' names seem symbolic or meaningful to you? Like, what does the name "Estarriol" make you think of?
  6. Does the book have a lesson for us? Is there a moral that we all can learn or is this story just about Ged's own quest?
  7. When Ged faces the shadow at the end of the book, the shadow switches shapes and takes several shapes out of Ged's past. How does it affect your reading when the shadow does that? Did this ending satisfy you or does it leave you confused or unsatisfied? If so, what would a satisfying ending be?
  8. We think that Le Guin's style is purposely a mix of telling and showing. How did her style affect your reading? It's pretty different from a lot of other books – does that make it hard to read? Does the writing style affect how you feel about the characters?
  9. Do you like Ged? Do you identify with him? Or do you think he's too much of a jerk – too proud, too quick to anger? Do his faults make you feel closer to him because we have those faults too?

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