The main thing motivating the teens in Tomorrow, When the War Began is the fact that they come home to find their families completely missing, taking captive by invading soldiers and held hostage at the Showground where the kids can't reach them. So yeah, family's kind of a big deal in this book.
That said, family doesn't just refer to blood lines or people you share a last name with; it is ultimately about connection and commitment, and in this way, this band of friends becomes a makeshift family in their own right, watching out for each other and working together to survive.
Questions About Family
- In what ways do the campers seem like family? Are there ways in which they aren't like family?
- How would you feel if your family was taken as prisoners? Would you try to rescue them?
- Are the teens foolish to try to rescue their families? Why or why not?
Chew on This
In this book, family isn't just about blood relations; it has to do with being part of a community that shares common goals.
Family is the most important reason for the teens to take action.
In Tomorrow, When the War Began, friends are the only people these kids have. Their families have been captured, their town's been occupied by enemy soldiers, and this little band of teens has no one to turn to for help but each other. Friendship is the thing they cling to in order to survive, their source of support and comfort, as well as assistance when it comes to meeting their basic needs for things like food. It's pretty much always true that you're a teen, friends are everything, but for these teens, this isn't just a feeling—it's their reality.
Questions About Friendship
- In what ways does friendship save this group? Are there any negative things about clinging to their friends?
- Are there any friends in this group that aren't as reliable? Who? Does this matter? Why or why not?
- What are the most important functions of friends for the characters? The least? What patterns do you notice and what do they tell you about friendship as a theme in the book?
Chew on This
The reason the Hell gangs survives the invasion is because the kids completely commit to sticking together.
Without their friend group, Chris would surely die, as would Fi. Some characters completely rely on their friends for survival.