You Could Live a Long Time: A You Ready? discussion guide for book clubs or personal use. You can also download a pdf version of this guide.

Discussion Guide*

1.     The author has combined a number of writing techniques including her personal journey, interviews with role models, research findings and resources.  What are the strengths and weaknesses of this approach?  

2.     When it comes to planning, the author says, “ You need to plan for the future but be prepared to seize the day.” Do you agree that we should prepare for old age? Are there certain things for which we can never prepare? 

3.     Have you found that your plans for your old age have changed over the years? If so, what has influenced those changes?

4.     What points raised in the book are most relevant to you?

5.   What surprised you about the book’s findings or made you think about something in a new way?

6.     The author highlights a number of characteristics that are linked to healthy aging. These include: the ability to set personal goals, a willingness to take risks, civic engagement, a sense of humour, and personal charm. What other attributes will help us age well

7.   Do you have a role model? What are his or her characteristics that inspire you? Are there people you do NOT want to emulate and why?

8.   Have you experienced society’s negative attitudes towards seniors?

9.   Will the boomers change society’s attitudes towards aging, and, if so, how?

10.   As a society, are we prepared for the graying of the population? What are the big issues that will be confronting us?

11.     The elders found that old age has brought them many advantages. Their worries have been reduced and life has become less stressful; they have more control over their time; they feel they no longer have to please others; and their life experience has given them a measure of authority. What are other advantages of getting old? 

12.     Will you be recommending this book to someone? If so, why?



*This Discussion Guide was prepared by Lyndsay Green in collaboration with the Booker’s Dozen Book Club, which has been meeting in Ottawa for 25 years. The book club members are: Sheila Bayne, Susan Caplan-Fireston. Lynn Cloutier, Leslie Climie, Bette Gordon, Judy Edmison, Ellen Emond, Lari Kaminsky. Marilyn Kraag, the late Joyce Parnega and Suzanne Robinson Gilpin.