Conferences and Events GatheringReaders

GatheringReaders Virtual Discussion 1: The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart

Hello hello everyone! Come one, come all. Welcome to Gathering Readers 1st Virtual Book Club Session. Our selected book this August is The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart.

I am hoping that most of you are halfway through the book as we are meeting in two weeks’ time (how fast time flies!) and that you are enjoying getting to know the peculiar children who answered Mr. Benedict’s equally-peculiar personal ad.

I have here a few discussion questions that I would love for you to answer in the Comments Section. In the off-chance that you feel *extremely extremely shy* and would rather write your answers down in the notebooks that you were given during our very first meeting, you can do that as well. No pressure, kids, as this is meant to be funfunfun anyways. I also invite all our readers who may have already read the book [or are interested in reading the book] to chime in with their thoughts, ideas, comments, and responses. No spoilers, though! 🙂

  1. How are you finding the book so far? Do you have trouble reading it? Which section are you in now?
  2. What do you think about some of the tests that the kids have to go through? Do the tests remind you of similar ones you may have taken before?
  3. Have you met anyone who is like Sticky Washington? (By the way, why is he called such again?) Or have you met anyone who is as resourceful as Kate Wetherall?
  4. Who is your favorite character so far?
  5. What do you think their final task would be and why are they selected?

That’s it! Wouldn’t want to overwhelm you for our first online session. Looking forward to reading your responses and ‘chatting’ with you!

Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

11 comments on “GatheringReaders Virtual Discussion 1: The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart

  1. 1. I think the book is good so far, but before in the 1st chapter it was
    a little bit hard reading it – I am now in the chapter entitled “Beware the Gemini”
    2. Not really, but at school every 4th semester we take a MAP test which is really Hard and long.
    3. I haven’t met anyone quite like them
    4. Constance because she is funny and witty and was smart enough to create the name The Mysterious Benedict Society.
    5. Because they have to spy on a man name Mr. Curtain and see what he is up too and signal the morse codes to tell Mr. Benedict what’s happening


    • Hi Myka, I’m glad that you’re enjoying the book ‘so far’ and that you’re getting to know the characters even better. Constance actually reminds me of you, especially when she is woken up from sleep, very much like you in the mornings. Hehe. 🙂 Do read on and you’d discover more about them as you finish the novel. 🙂


  2. 1. I think it is a good book and I don’t have trouble reading it yet. I am in the section of “Caught in the Act”.
    2. The tests remind me of the tests I take at tuition when I am moving a level up.
    3. Not really.
    4. Reynard Muldoon. I think he is smart and has the most useful talents.
    5. Their final task would be to spy on a man called Mr.Curtain and constantly report what is going on.


    • Abraham, so glad to see you here! You’re nearly done with the book, congratulations! I agree with you about Reynard Muldoon, he is a natural-born leader, very level-headed and rational – I can see why you like him. I wonder what you kids think of Mr. Curtain and Gemini. Hmmm… Looking forward to seeing you all in two weeks’ time!


  3. I love the idea of a “Virtual Book Club Session”! Very cool–what a great idea for teachers to try to incorporate in their classrooms! Even though I’m a little older than 10-14, I might just have to read this book 🙂


    • Hi Katrina, we’d love to hear your thoughts about the book! 🙂 I used this book previously in a former virtual book club discussion with a different group of participants. Always a hit.


  4. A virtual discussion is a brilliant idea. 🙂 Like Katrina, I am way way past 10-14, but that won’t stop me from posting a comment still. Teehee. 🙂 I’ve only read the 2nd book in the series way back. But the characters are pretty memorable. Sticky and Constance are my favorites. Kate is someone I’d love to have around if I get shipwrecked on a deserted island. Her red bucket seems to have a lot of nifty stuff. 😀


    • Hi Tin, you’ve read the 2nd book but not the first? Nice! Hahaha. I read all three books but I haven’t gotten a copy of the prequel yet. Did you know that they just recently published “The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict” – must get my hands on this one soon. 🙂


      • Yeah, I picked up the 2nd installment without knowing that it was part of a trilogy. I haven’t gotten around reading the rest just yet.

        Oh yeah, I saw that one in the bookstore, it has a lovely black dust jacket. I love how the illustrations are done in the book too.


  5. Pingback: En la Clase: Virtual Book Discussions | Vamos A Leer

  6. Pingback: August Round Up and the Winner for the AWB Reading Challenge «

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