Dear Mr. Henshaw Essay Questions

Essay Questions

  1. 1

    In what ways do we see Leigh's character change as he gets older?

    As he gets older, Leigh seems to become more resentful about his parents' divorce. At the start of the book, they are still living together as a family and he seems like a normal, happy, cheeky little boy. When the divorce first occurs he seems sad, and a little confused, but it is not until later that he voices his anger and resentment that his life has been spoiled. He also seems to be much better at expressing himself as he gets older.

  2. 2

    Do you think Leigh's mother should have considered reconciling with his father when he asked her?

    Although nobody should stay in a situation in which they are miserable, Leigh's mother probably should at least have considered the idea for the sake of her son as she knows he is unhappy and misses his dad. Although she says that she spent too many nights alone when they were married she is forcing a similar loneliness onto her son now that they are divorced. Just as she has changed, Leigh's father has too; she had said he did not express his emotions at all but by admitting he misses his wife and son he seems to have learned how to so that. Therefore she should consider a reconciliation because it could change Leigh's life for the better and make him feel less lonely.

  3. 3

    What do we learn about Mr Henshaw from the answers Leigh receives to his letters?

    Although we never see the letters we do learn that Boyd Henshaw is a busy author as his first reply was a stock answer letter for fans and not an original note. We learn that he wants to challenge Leigh to think and to express himself, and not only to think but to think outside the box, writing comical answers to the author questions that Leigh sends him. Although it seems that he does not really want to keep up their communication - Leigh promises a couple of times not to bother him by sending more notes, and tells him that he appreciates how busy he is - he nonetheless suggests that Leigh keeps a diary, not only to improve his writing style but also to enable him to feel like he has someone to confide in. He is instrumental in helping Leigh to understand his own thoughts and feelings and he also piques Leigh's interest in being an author which gives him something to focus on.

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