1. The past plays a role in each of the character’s lives. What part does the past play in Kate’s life? In the lives of the other characters? How does that past either help or hinder them?
  2. What is Kate’s ostensible reason for returning to the Isle of Glenroth? Is there an underlying motivation as well, and if so, how does that affect her actions and feelings?
  3. Why does Kate feel obligated to help her husband’s childhood friend? How have events in her past intensified those feelings?
  4. How do the events at the Tartan Ball set up the action that follows?
  5. Kate’s feelings toward her gift as an antique whisperer are ambivalent at best. Does her experience with the antique casket influence her decision to become involved? Have you ever experienced something similar?
  6. What role does Kate’s mother play in her life? How are they different? How are they the same?
  7. Do you see a similarity between Kate and any of the Scottish characters in the novel?
  8. Which of the characters do you identify with most? Which reminds you of someone else in your life?
  9. Think about the setting of the book–a remote Hebridean island in late autumn. What effect does the setting have on the crime and the investigation? How does the weather affect and/or reflect the action?
  10. What part does the legend of Flora Arnott’s ghost play in the book?
  11. Why do you think Kate remembers and reflects on the words of the Isaac Watt hymn? What does she learn from it in the end?
  12. How is Tom Mallory different than Kate’s first husband, Bill? Do you think a long-distance relationship can work going forward?