Author of the Glass Bead Mystery Series
1. The main character in High Strung, Jax O’Connell, is a glass beadmaker, which is an unusual career. Have you ever heard of glass beadmaking before? What did you learn about glass beadmaking from this novel? Do you think you’d ever want to try making beads yourself?
2. In the story, Jax has two friends: Tessa, who Jax has known since kindergarten, and Val, who Jax has known for a few years. How do these different friendships support Jax? Do you see any jealousy among the trio of friends? What makes Jax’s friendships with these women so strong?
3. High Strung has several humorous passages. Which one is your favorite? Please read your favorite passage to the group and discuss why that particular scene amuses you.
4. There are a couple of different mysteries that are intertwined in High Strung. Did you guess the solutions either mystery or were you surprised to discover the truths that Jax uncovers?
5. The story takes place in Seattle. Did you get a sense of the place from this book? For those of you who have visited Seattle, why do you think it was chosen as the setting for this series?
6. In many mysteries the murder occurs within the first few pages. In High Strung, the murder doesn’t occur until several chapters into the story. Did this affect how you felt about the plot? Do you think there are reasons why the Janice Peacock choose to have the murder happen when it did?
7. High Strung is the first book in the Glass Bead Mystery Series. Have you read any of the other books in the series, and if so, how did it stack up to this one? If you haven’t read any of the other books in the series, do you think you will?
8. Animals play an important part in High Strung. What are your thoughts about animals in mysteries? Do you think Gumdrop the cat, Stanley the Bassett hound, and Tito the mutt enhanced the storyline? In what ways did the pets move the plot forward?
9. There’s a little romance in High Strung. In general, do you like there to be a romantic subplot in mysteries? Do you have any thoughts about Jax’s love life as you learn more about her?
10. Jax is a single woman living on her own as an artist. She risked a lot leaving her job and moving to Seattle. Do you think this is something you’d have consider doing if you were in Jax's situation? What are some other risks you saw in this book and how did they move the plot forward?