Discussion Questions

1.   How does Marco look to Emmajin at first? How did it make you feel, to read about a European/white man through Asian eyes?

2.   How would you describe the differences between Marco’s values and Emmajin’s values?

3.   How does Emmajin cope with the conflict between family expectations vs. personal ambition? Did you ever face such a conflict?

4.   Emmajin also struggles with a conflict between her personal ambition vs. desires of the heart (love). How does that struggle resonate today?

5.   Why does Emmajin want to become a warrior? How does her view about war evolve?

6.   Did you think it was believable that the Great Khan would send her west on a “mission of peace”? why or why not?

7.   Do you think a love affair between Emmajin and Marco could have a happy ending, in the long run? Why or why not?

8.   What do you think might happen after the novel ends?

9.   One underlying conflict Emmajin feels is that between patriotism and love for a foreigner. To what extent do you think these are in conflict, even today? Can you love a foreigner, see the world through his eyes, and still love your country?

10.  Did this book change your views of “Mongols”? If so, how?