Infinity Ring: Divide and Conquer Discussion Guide
- Grades: 3–5
About this book
Hundreds of ships carrying thousands of Viking warriors are attacking medieval Paris. The Parisians are fighting back, but they can only hold out for so long. And that’s bad news—especially since Dak has been captured and forced to work with the invading army while Sera and Riq defend Paris from within. No matter which side wins, the kids will lose… unless Dak can find an ally among some of history’s fiercest warriors.
Questions for Discussion
- Considering the ending of A Mutiny in Time, what do you predict is in store for Sera, Dak, and Riq in Divide and Conquer?
- Consider the role of the Hystorians that Sera, Dak, and Riq meet throughout their time travels; why are these individuals so critical to the success of the trio? Would you describe them as dedicated to the cause? In your opinion, what are the greatest risks for them?
- After Sera doubts Dak when he anticipates a critical moment between the Bishop Gauzelin and Siegfried, it is Riq who trusts Dak’s instinct and takes his side. Given their past interactions, why is this particularly unusual? Do you expect the relationship between the two boys to be better moving forward? Why or why not?
- Using the phrase, “In this story, courage means…,” discuss the characters you believe exhibit the greatest amount of courage in Divide and Conquer. Explain your choices.
- In what ways are the “Breaks” in history an indicator that things are not right in Dak and Sera’s world? Offer your predictions of how correcting the Breaks will change their lives and the lives of others.
- What might be the challenges of attempting to carry out Aristotle’s two-thousand-year-old plan to save the world? If you could pick a favorite historical event that you would like to see these junior Hystorians tackle, what would it be? Why do you find this event interesting? If you could travel with the trio, is it a time that you would want to visit as well? Why or why not?
- For this adventure, the history Break that Dak, Sera, and Riq are challenged to correct sends them to Paris, France; what is it about this city in 885 A.D. that surprises them?
- In Divide and Conquer, Dak’s need to get closer to and investigate historically significant artifacts lands him in trouble on multiple occasions. Do you think his choice to do so is a selfish one? Why or why not?
- Describe the Time Wardens encountered by Dak, Sera, and Riq. In your opinion, what makes these characters so sinister?
- In A Mutiny in Time, readers learn that the Remnants experienced by Sera are very difficult for her, but in Divide and Conquer, it is discovered that Riq also suffers greatly from them. Why do you believe he is hesitant to share his experiences with her about this shared affliction? Offer a prediction as to what might cause these for the two, and why they will ultimately be important.
- Describe Dak, Sera, and Riq. Based on their personalities, who do you think you are most similar to and why?
- As Dak encounters the Vikings for the first time, he considers, “He’d expected them to look more barbaric—everything he’d ever read about them described their cruelty and filthiness—but these men didn’t seem to match that description at all.” In what other ways are the Vikings described in history books different than the actual Vikings he encounters and interacts with?
- Divide and Conquer contains a number of characters who exhibit a variety of strengths. Who most impresses you with their strength? Explain your choice.
- Why does Sera’s connection with Bill complicate things for the trio? How does meeting him again in the future make things more challenging for Sera?
- Using the phrase, “This is a story about…,” supply five words to describe Divide and Conquer. Explain your choices.
About the Author
Carrie Ryan is the New York Times bestselling author of The Forest of Hands and Teeth series and editor of the anthology Foretold. She lives with her family in North Carolina. Visit her online at carrieryan.com.
This guide was prepared by Rose Brock, a teacher, school librarian, and doctoral candidate at Texas Woman’s University, specializing in children’s and young adult literature.