QUESTIONS ON THE TEXTQUESTIONS ON THE TEXT
CHAPTER 1CHAPTER 1
1. Why didn’t Paloma want to move to England?
She didn’t want to leave her best friend, Eva. She was enjoying school, and everything was
starting to go well.
2. What do we learn about Marta and the relationship between her
Marta never complained about anything. She was a year older than Paloma, and she was
much more mature than her. The sisters were very different, and had very different
3. Describe Paloma’s relationship with Daniel?
She had liked Daniel for years and now he had asked her to work with him on their
science project. They had to spend time together and they often met after school.
4. Why does Marta think that it would be good for Paloma to leave
Eva is very arrogant and she tries to control Paloma. She’s a bad influence on Paloma.
CHAPTER 2CHAPTER 2
1. How did Paloma try to stop the move and how did her family
react to her behaviour?
She complained, shouted and cried, but that didn’t help. Her father was upset and her
mum was angry with her. Even Marta was losing patience with Paloma.
2. What do we learn about Eva from her phone call with Laia?
How does the phone call affect Paloma?
Although she doesn’t like her, Eva is friendly to Laia because she’s getting her tickets
to see the Amazons in concert. Paloma feels sad because she won’t be able to see
3. What made Paloma understand that Daniel liked her?
He kissed her and said that he was sorry she was leaving. He wanted to keep in
CHAPTER 3CHAPTER 3
1. Why did Eva give Paloma on the last day of school, and what
did Paloma think of it?
Eva gave Paloma a diary and a card. Paloma thought the diary was great but that the
card was a little depressing.
2. How did Paloma’s dad react when David chased Rex round the
boxes and why did Paloma find this surprising?
He laughed. Paloma hadn’t seen her dad laugh like that for a long time. He always
seemed to be tense and worried when he was at home.
3. What facts did Marta tell Paloma about their parents?
They didn’t want to move to England, but there was no other option. They had to move
and it was causing problems in their marriage. They might even get divorced if
things didn’t go well in London.
4. How did the conversation with Marta affect Paloma’s plans?
She had planned to make a big scene at the airport. But after her conversation with
Marta, she tried to be strong and positive.
CHAPTER 4CHAPTER 4
1. In what ways was Paloma trying to be less selfish and more positive
towards her family?
She talked to Marta more often, and she tried to be more patient with David.
2. Why did Paloma’s dad decided to bring the family to London and why
had this been a sacrifice for her mum?
He was going to lose his job in the company, but his good English saved him. They offered him a
new job in England and he accepted it immediately. Paloma’s mum had been offered a
promotion in the school where she taught and she couldn’t accept it.
3. Describe Paloma’s feelings when her dad came and spoke to her one
She felt guilty when her dad thanked her for being mature. She was shocked that her mum might
leave him and go back to Spain. She was upset at seeing her father cry.
4. What kind of school was Paloma going to and why was this good for
It was an international school, with students from all over the world and some English kids whose
parents travelled a lot. Paloma could study some subjects in Spanish.
CHAPTER 5CHAPTER 5
1. Why did the students work so hard in
the 11th year?
They were studying for their A level exams, which were
difficult. No one could get into a British university
without good A level marks.
2. How had Paloma’s attitude to her new
school changed by the end of the
She thought her new classmates weren’t so bad and it
would be nice to know them better. She thought the
school was going to be OK.
CHAPTER 6CHAPTER 6
1. Describe Paloma’s feelings and thoughts on the way
home from school.
She was feeling ignored and she was angry because nobody was paying
any attention to her. She thought her mother didn’t care about her
or how she had survived her first day.
2. Why was Marta worried about Alexa?
She thought Alexa sounded a little like Eva. She thought that Eva liked
to control her friends too much, especially Paloma, and that she was
false and manipulated people.
3. What shows that the relationship between Paloma
and Marta was now better?
When Mum called them down for dinner, they had been talking for
more than two hours. They had never done that in Spain.
CHAPTER 7CHAPTER 7
1. How did Paloma feel during dinner that night?
She felt that something was wrong. Her parents were being too polite to
each other and she could feel tension in the air.
2. Why did Daniel think that Eva wasn’t Paloma’s
Eva told Daniel that Paloma had a new boyfriend, that she liked him very
much and that she was too busy to write to him.
3. What did Paloma think of Alexa, and what worried
Paloma liked Alexa but the other girls in her class didn’t seem to like her
and Paloma didn’t know why.
4. Why was Marta worried?
It was 11.30 on Saturday night and Dad wasn’t home yet.
CHAPTER 8CHAPTER 8
1. What was strange about Paloma’s friendship with
Several times Paloma invited Alexa to her house or suggested that they do
something together at the weekend, but Alexa always said no. Alexa
never invited Paloma to her house.
2. What happened at home that evening and what did
Paloma think was the cause of it?
Mum told David to stop playing his CDs. When David protested, Mum
got really angry and told him to go to bed. Paloma thought that Mum
was worried about Dad.
3. What news did the teacher give the class and what
was the class’s reaction?
She was planning to take them all on a field trip at the beginning of the
half-term holiday in October. Everyone was very excited.
CHAPTER 9CHAPTER 9
1. What did Alexa tell Paloma about her sister Katie?
Katie was severely mentally handicapped. She was two years older than
Alexa, but she acted very strangely sometimes.
2. Describe what happened when Alexa invited her
friend to her house in Valencia.
Her friend was very frightened when she saw Katie and told everyone
terrible stories about Alexa’s family.
3. What was the result of the conversation between
Paloma and Alexa?
Paloma invited Alexa to her house the next day after school and they did
their homework together. Alexa had a very nice time and enjoyed
meeting her family.
CHAPTER 10CHAPTER 10
1. What did Paloma do to make Alexa feel better
and how did Alexa react to this?
She told Alexa that her family had problems, too. Alexa said it had
helped her talking to Paloma about Katie. Maybe if Paloma told
Alexa about her problem, Alexa could help her, too.
2. How did things change for Alexa after that?
The students became much friendlier to Alexa and Susan and Karin
accepted Alexa into all their activities.
3. What information did the students get about the
They could do all kinds of activities there. There would be a
midnight hike on Saturday night and a disco on Sunday evening.
The students had to choose their groups for the rooms they
would sleep in.
CHAPTER 11CHAPTER 11
1. Why were Mr and Mrs Santos sending
their children to Madrid?
Mr Santos was having problems because his job wasn’t
going so well. Mr and Mrs Santos wanted to be
alone to try and solve their problems.
2. What suggestion did Gary make?
Paloma could go on the field trip and then go to
Madrid on Tuesday morning.
CHAPTER 12CHAPTER 12
1. How did the girls react when Paloma started to cry?
They looked at each other in surprise and Alexa put her arm round Paloma. They told her
they would help her as much as they could.
2. Why was Paloma happy to spend so much time with Gary and
Steve on the hike and at the disco?
She was beginning to like Gary more and more. It was good for her ego that a handsome,
popular boy like Steve was paying her so much attention and he was a fantastic
3. What happened to Paloma at breakfast the next morning?
There was no room for her and Alexa at Susan and Karin’s table. Julia didn’t say good
morning and Susan and Karin looked very embarrassed. Paloma could feel the
students’ eyes on her and was horrified to see the looks on some of their faces.
CHAPTER 13CHAPTER 13
1. What was Gary’s explanation for the girls’ behaviour?
He said that Julia was responsible. She had fancied Steve for a long time and was envious
that he was so attentive to Paloma on the hike and danced with her all the time at the
2. What information did Grandma give the girls about their parents’
Their father had a drinking problem. He had been an alcoholic for a long time and that was
causing the problems in their parents’ marriage.
3. What had their father been doing to try to solve his problem and
how did Grandma say the girls could help?
He had been going to meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous and also to special clinics. The
girls would have to give him a lot of compassion and understanding.
CHAPTER 14CHAPTER 14
1. Why was Paloma’s meeting with Daniel good for her?
She told him all her problems. He was a good listener and also gave her excellent advice.
By the end of the lunch, Paloma felt a lot better.
2. Why was Paloma happy after her conversation with Eva?
She was finally free of Eva. Maybe she was becoming more mature, like Marta.
3. Why was Mrs Santons feeling nervous, and what did Marta do
when she saw her mother?
Mrs Santos wasn’t sure what her daughters’ reaction would be to their grandmother’s
explanations. Marta gave her a kiss and said that they would help her as much as they
CHAPTER 15CHAPTER 15
1. Was Mrs Santos optimistic or pessimistic about her
family’s future? Give a reason for your answer.
She was optimistic. She said it would be a long, difficult process for Dad
and it wouldn’t be easy for them either, but if they worked together as a
family, she was sure everything would be OK.
2. What surprise did Paloma get when she arrived at
school and what was the explanation for this?
Everybody came running towards her. Alexa had explained everything to
them and they were sorry they had been horrible to her.
3. Three positive things happened to Paloma at the end
of the story. What were they?
Her friends said they would do everything they could to help her. Gary
invited her to go to the Amazons’ concert with him on Saturday night.
The therapists thought that Dad was finally beginning to make