Rain Is Not My Indian Name: Independence Day

Quick Questions

  1. What kind of a dance does Rain attend in Oklahoma?
  2. What surprise does Rain wake up to?
  3. What does Rain finally do to honor Galen’s birthday?
  4. What does Spence bring to Rain?
  5. Who sends Rain a surprise email?

For Book Talks Or Your Journal


Several references to religion are woven into the story. We know that Rain’s family is Baptist although the text hints that there are traditional Muscogee Creeks on her mom’s side. Rain has stopped going to church since Galen’s death, but quotes from the Bible on her website memorial to Galen and mentions in the next chapter that she might sit by Queenie at church the next Sunday. How do you think her feelings about religion are affected by what’s happening in her life?

What did she mean by, “Back when I was seven, I didn’t have to think about what I believed and where I belonged. I just did.”

artist’s message

Dmitri creates a mural for Rain on her sidewalk. Why do you think he does this? What do you think is the message behind his mural? Do you think there are any romantic possibilities between Rain and Dmitri? How about Spence?

online memorial

Rain finally decides to honor Galen’s memory by creating a website. Do you think this was a fitting tribute? Why or why not?

What does Rain mean when she says, “This was my truth about Galen”? What is the significance of the Bible passage she quotes?

the rogue

Except for their love of Aunt Georgia, Rain and Spence seem to have very little in common. But then he surprises her by noticing that her eyes are hazel and describing them in the same way that her mother did. Does this change Rain’s opinion of him in any way? How about yours?

Grampa’s correspondence

Postcards and an email from Grampa are sprinkled through the story. Readers are treated to a glimpse into his relationship with Clementine. What does it say that Rain is the first to know about their engagement? How does this contrast with another relationship in the story? How do you explain the differences?