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Reading Discussion Guides

Freeglader by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell

About the Book

After the great battle and destruction of Undertown, its surviving inhabitants must seek out a new life in the Free Glades, but to do so will require a mass exodus across the treacherous Mire and the seductive Twilight Woods. Led by a band of surviving sky pirates, the Library Knights, and a band of protectors known as the Ghosts of Screetown, thousands of homeless seek a better life. What they don’t know is that the Shryke bird creatures, the Goblins, and the evil foundry master plan to enslave them. It’s up to Rook, Felix, Xanth, and the others to fight for their very survival… as Freegladers.

Guide prepared by Colleen Carroll

Discussion Questions

  • Chapter Two is called “Exodus.” Discuss the meaning of this word and identify times in history where exoduses have occurred. Challenge students to come up with reasons why people are forced or compelled to leave their homeland. Discuss examples of mass exoduses around the globe that have happened in the last five years, and the reasons for these flights.
  • Xanth is despised by the Librarians for his betrayal in The Last of the Sky Pirates, and for his work as assistant to the brutal Orbix Xaxis. In the Edgelands, Xanth saves Rook’s life. How is his selflessness a necessary step to his ultimate redemption? Before Xanth can be truly redeemed, why must he first forgive himself?

Extension Activity

  • Rook learns that he is the grandson of Twig and the great-grandson of Cloud Wolf. He is given a miniature oil painting of Cloud Wolf, the single artifact that connects Rook to his heritage. Have students, with parents’ permission, look through family keepsakes to identify an artifact. Have them write an essay describing its significance and how it represents their family history.


Paul Stewart, Chris Riddell
Age Level:
Middle Grade
Fantasy, Fiction