The Rest of Us Just Live Here Discussion Questions

Instructor: Bethany Calderwood

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

'The Rest of Us Just Live Here' is the story of a group of teens facing graduation and learning about themselves and each other while hoping the indie kids in town can rout an invasion of body-snatching immortals. These discussion questions will take your student deeper into this engaging novel.

The Rest of Us Just Live Here

In Patrick Ness's 2015 fantasy novel, narrator Mike explains that every few years, some kind of supernatural tragedy (such as vampire or zombie attacks) takes place and indie kids are forced to save the world. Meanwhile, he says, The Rest of Us Just Live Here. Mike and his friends are regular kids surviving the last few weeks of high school when weird stuff starts to happen. In parallel story lines, we see indie kids fighting immortal beings while Mike and his friends deal with anxiety, family, and relationships. This coming-of-age story with a twist will start some interesting conversations with your high school class, making it a good one for the end of the school year.

Questions About the Story

  • What is complicated about Mike's relationship with his family? How do his feelings about his parents and siblings change and shift through the course of the story?
  • The adults in the book seem largely unaware of what Mike claims are supernatural events. What explanation is given? What questions do you still have about the more fantastic elements of the book? Is Mike a reliable narrator of these events?
  • Why is the concert important to Meredith?
  • How does the arrival of Nathan affect Mike's group of friends? What clues do you have about Nathan and Jared?
  • How does Jared's unusual heritage fit in with the rest of the group of friends?

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