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Discussion Guide

The Labyrinth Wall Discussion Guide

About The Labyrinth Wall

Waking up in a musky room packed with other people is Araina’s first memory in life. The Creators built her to appear like a young woman, equipping her mind with basic knowledge of their deadly labyrinth, but Araina has yet to understand the purpose of her existence. Though her people, the Mahk, are known to kill one another for food she has managed to avoid such measures. Araina makes do under brutal circumstances until the day a man dressed in white falls through the labyrinth wall; an enigmatic event that changes her entire life. Her search for answers about the stranger leads her through a series of deadly encounters with the Creators on a life altering journey that reveals troubling realities about herself and her world. In undertaking her journey, Araina must decide if she will trust potentially deceitful allies in order to survive.

Will Araina make it to the other side of the wall?

Character Quotes for Discussion

* What was the context of each quote? Is it relevant to real life in society or personally?
* Do you agree or disagree with the statement?
* Can you relate to the quote? If so, is it a healthy outlook or not?

“It’s not worth focusing on the negative, when there’s so much positive right in front of me.” ~Araina

“Darkness and decay are nothing new in this world, which is why there’s always a better place to go in my imagination.” ~Araina

“Delusional or not, maybe if I believe in a better world with enough conviction, and convince others to believe it as well, then it will be real.” ~Araina

“You know it’s okay to be sad?” ~Korun

“Reality worked its way into my dreams where it wasn’t welcome.” ~Saige

Discussion Questions:

Does the oppressive role of the Creators in relation to the Mahk mirror real life cultural relationships now or historically?

How has the harsh rule of the Creators shaped Mahk culture? Based on the definition of culture, do the Mahk even have a culture?

Despite her ability to survive in the labyrinth, Araina decides it is worth risking her life to speak with the man in white and find out where he came from. Why does she do this? Would you have done the same?

Does Araina’s reason for believing in a better place on the other side of the labyrinth wall correlate to societal or personal values in real life? How so?

Araina chooses to live in seclusion because she perceives all Mahk to be selfish and vile. In order to survive Araina is forced to work with other Mahk and even a Creator, all of whom she perceives to be evil. What does her experience of spending time with those people teach her about her perception in relation to reality?

Like all people, Araina has strengths and weaknesses. What are they? Do you feel you share any of her qualities?

Before Araina joins up with Darith to learn more about the man white, she tries to self talk herself into killing in order to survive, like other Mahk do. Does she ever actually take that action? Do you think the change of events in her life influenced her to or not to?

Darith tells Araina he knew her before they first spoke, because he’d seen her actions. Later, she tells him he didn’t know her because he didn’t understand the reason behind her actions. In other words, she feels motives are more revealing of people than their actions alone. Do you agree with Darith
or Araina?

Araina is motivated to reach the other side of the wall for several reasons. She hopes for a better life, she wants a safer place for Blue, and she’s curious about Korun’s origins as well as his abilities. However, she tells Korun she wants to help him reach his home and she tells Soll there is definitely safety on the other side of the wall. Due to her lies, Korun tells her she is manipulative. Do you agree? What do you believe prompts her behavior? Is this a habit she outgrows?

Eventually, Araina’s group learns who is responsible for the Creators finding the Mahk colony. Most of Araina’s companions are very angry with this individual, but Araina has compassion on her. Why do you think that is? Would you be able to forgive her also?

When Soll learns one of his friends led the Creators to the colony and is responsible in part for the demise of their people, he shuns that person. His temper takes over and he can’t forgive her. Forgiveness is a struggle in real life as well. What reasons deter people from forgiving others?

When she reaches her hiding spot with the Mahk group, Araina draws a picture on the wall. Why does she say she draws? Do you think creative outlets are important?

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