ONE MORE LAST CHANCE
A Place to Call Home Book 2
By Cathleen Armstrong
Sarah Cooley has come home to Last Chance, New Mexico, for one reason—because it doesn’t change. After a relationship gone bad with a man who wanted to change everything about her, Sarah is more than ready for the town whose motto may as well be, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
Chris Reed, on the other hand, wants nothing more than to spark some change in the little town. As the new owner of the Dip ’n’ Dine, he’s shaking things up to draw folks from all over the Southwest into his restaurant.
As it turns out, the winds of change are blowing into Last Chance—just not in the ways that Sarah or Chris might expect.
1. Chris Reed comes to Last Chance ready to change the Dip ‘n’ Dine into a destination restaurant. His “Unless things change, they die,” is met by his cook, Carlos’s “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Which do you think is the most valid observation? Are they indeed contradictory?
2. After a frustrating argument with Juanita, Chris observes that “people tempered by the harsh and unforgiving landscape might be just a bit inflexible themselves.” Does locale, such as the desert around Last Chance, or the plains of the Midwest, or the lush green of the South, really influence the societies it produces? In what ways?
3. Sarah Cooley came back to Last Chance because she no longer could be with a man who wanted to change her. Do you think she was running away from her problems, or running to a place of strength? How so?
4. Sarah takes an instant dislike to Chris because he represents change. He literally, and figuratively, sticks up like a whack-a-mole. And Sarah, just by occupying the place she does in Last Chance, makes Chris feel more like an outsider than ever. In what ways are their first impressions of each other accurate? In what ways do they get it wrong?
5. Despite his attempts to look after her, Chris’s sister Kaitlyn seems determined to make a mess of her life. Do you see him as a protector or an enabler? How would you have handled Kaitlyn turning up with Olivia on the back of a motorcycle? What advice would you have given Chris?
6. Other than Chris or Sarah, which resident of Last Chance would you most like to know in real life? Why is that? Is there one you identify with? Which one and why?
7. Do you know anyone like Elizabeth? Like Juanita? How have they affected your life?
8. At the beginning of the book, Sarah hates the idea that things change and Elizabeth points out that change is always happening, whether you notice it or not. Is there a point in the story where Sarah makes a decision or takes an action that shows she ready to accept change, maybe even embrace it? Did you see evidence of this before it happened? What was the first hint that she was beginning to see things differently?
9. Which events best reveal Chris’s character? Sarah’s?
10. In what ways do Brandon and Kaitlyn view the world differently from Chris and Sarah?
11. Sarah’s self-proclaimed secret vice is horror movies. Do you have any secret vices you’d admit to the group? Or do you say, with Rita, “Now if I did that, they wouldn’t be a secret, would they?”
12. What role does faith play in One More Last Chance?
13. What did you think of Last Chance? Is it a place you’d like to visit? To live? How would living in Last Chance change you?