Use these discussion questions to guide your next meeting.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Sydney Green is Brooklyn born and raised, but her beloved neighborhood seems to change every time she blinks. Condos are sprouting like weeds, FOR SALE signs are popping up overnight, and the neighbors she’s known all her life are disappearing. To hold onto her community’s past and present, Sydney channels her frustration into a walking tour and finds an unlikely and unwanted assistant in one of the new arrivals to the block—her neighbor Theo.

But Sydney and Theo’s deep dive into history quickly becomes a dizzying descent into paranoia and fear. Their neighbors may not have moved to the suburbs after all, and the push to revitalize the community may be more deadly than advertised.

When does coincidence become conspiracy? Where do people go when gentrification pushes them out? Can Sydney and Theo trust each other—or themselves—long enough to find out before they too disappear?

This discussion guide was posted in partnership with Harper Collins.

THE DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

“People bury the parts of history they don't like, pave it over like African cemeteries beneath Manhattan skyscrapers.” Are neighborhood revitalization and gentrification the same time? Why or why not?


What is most surprising about When No One Is Watching?


Compare and contrast Sydney and Kim? How does their lived experience inform their decisions?


When No One Is Watching: A Thriller

"From the first page of WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING, I felt like I was right there in the gentrifying Brooklyn neighborhood, filled with sharply etched characters and dialogue that zings. Then bam!  I was knocked over by the momentum of an intense psychological thriller that doesn’t let go until the final page. This is a terrific read." (Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author)

“Masterfully written suspense. Beneath a seemingly ordinary setting, Cole weaves layers of dread, all building toward a shocking and satisfying conclusion." (Kelley Armstrong, #1 New York Times bestselling author of City of the Lost )

“With a keen eye for details, Alyssa Cole deftly unspools a rich narrative with compelling characters who live and breathe against a vibrant backdrop. From the bold first line to the exquisitely subtle last, WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING is a top-notch page-turner!” (Wendy Corsi Staub, New York Times bestselling author)

"Dread builds and mutates into near-horror... It was eye-opening, sad, shocking, gripping, I devoured it in one go. I recommend SO HIGHLY."  (Marian Keyes, #1 bestselling author)

"this outstanding thriller... builds to a credible finale. This stellar and unflinching look at racism and greed will have readers hooked til the end." (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

“[A] searing indictment of the inseparable evils of racism and gentrification wrapped in an anxiety-inducing thriller with elements of romance and horror… Cole expertly layers plot twists, raising the stakes until the dramatic finale, and readers will cheer when the real heroes are revealed. Cole is a sure-bet suggestion for romance readers, and When No One Is Watching will expand her already enthusiastic audience.” (Booklist (starred review))