Jeopardy Book Club – Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk


Anyone that knows me knows that I love games, so when Marion and Carol hosted book club this month and surprised us with a fun Jeopardy game (game questions and answers included below), our group was elated!!!

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk by  Ben Fountain was our latest book club selection, a wonderfully written, poignant story that is both funny and heartbreaking.  We all agreed that this was a great read.



We started out with lots of yummy snacks and the most delicious Margarita Martinis that Marion made and then it was game time.


We were broken into 3 teams and played the game using rules from the Jeopardy TV show.


Team #3 won and were the first to pick from the tray of goodies, but there were enough prizes for everyone to win a little something… thank goodness because my team bet it all and lost!!!



After we finished Jeopardy there was a meaningful discussion about the book. What an especially fun book club night!

by: Kelly Konrad
Fountain’s protagonist is 19-year-old Billy Lynn, a self-described Army grunt who finds himself in the middle of a national pridefest for his unit’s bravery in an Iraqi firefight. The story is told entirely from his view, which thanks to his age, is still evolving. Billy and his cohorts are on their way to their last appearance as part of their “Victory Tour” prior to being shipped back overseas to complete their tour of duty. It’s been a whirlwind two weeks, including a trip to see Billy’s family and a funeral for a friend.
It’s clear the men of Bravo are in all sorts of pain, physically and more importantly, emotionally. Their story is laid out over the course of a single day—a day that begins with Billy nursing a hangover. His headache, though, is secondary to his heartache—heartache for his mother and sisters, one of which is the reason Billy is in the army, his best friend ‘Shroom, and for himself—trying to find some realistic, romantic connection with mere hours left in the States.
The book does a fantastic job exploring the themes of family and friendship and takes a really stark look at American patriotism as its tied to financial fortunes. The devil’s in the details for poor Albert, the maybe-not-so-hard-driving movie producer trying to negotiate a deal before the boys ship out once more.


(There were three pieces of paper the “Vanna’s” pulled off: the top-the amount to bet, the middle-the question, the bottom-the answer)

 Jeopardy Quiz
by Marion and Carol

1. Billy decides to do this before drinking his beer, since they’ve had no time for exercise on the Victory Tour…
What is: 50 push-ups
2. Producer Albert Ratner mentions folding two soldiers into one role and having this actress play these two soldiers…
Who is: Actress, Hillary Swank; Soldiers, Billy and Sergeant Dime
3. This Bravo team member was described as a “melanin-deficient manatee.”…
Who is: Shroom.
4. Billy joined the Army by way of this criminal prosecution maneuver…
What is: A Plea Bargain
5. While Bravo collects team autographs in the locker room on their pigskins, Dime gets only one, namely ________…
Who is: Ennis, the equipment manager.

1. The men of the Bravo Squad have an unbreakable bond of brotherhood, after their firestorm experience in the _______________
What is: Al-Ansakar Canal
2. The Bush administration has sent the Bravo Squad on a nation wide 14 City Victory Tour, for this reason?
What is: To help invigorate public support of the war.
3. The book is a virtuoso account of combat, commerce and this American past-time.
What is: Football.
4. Fountain’s book has been compared to an Iraqi version of this popular WWII book by Joseph Heller.
What is: “Catch-22”
5. America has become one giant ______ with a country attached.
What is: A mall.

1. “If a bullet’s going to get you, it’s already been fired.”
Who is: Shroom  (Sgt. Breem)
2. A small gang of Iraqi boys say to the Bravos, “Mister, give me my pocket! Give me my pocket!”, they are asking for this.
What is: Money
3. “I am a self-described pacifist twerp.”
Who is: movie producer Albert Ratner.
4. Billy describing his combat rituals:  “Never cross a threshold with your
What is: your left foot leading.
5. “I took monkey gigs,” he called them in a bitter, waspish voice, like the Tin Man pre-lubed.”
Who is: Ray Lynn, Billy’s father

Did you know?
1. Billy answers the question asked by Sgt. Dime correctly as to how long a Football Field is.
What is: 120 yards
2. Albert Ratner had previously demanded this amount for each soldier’s life story and then Norman Oglesby offers them this amount.
What are: $100,000 and $5,500
3. The author wrote “Brief Encounters with _____” this Argentinian Marxist.
Who is: Che Guevara
4. The Chapter Title “Temporary Sanity” refers to Kathryn’s wish that Billy do what.
What is: Go AWOL
5. Norm Oglesby thought Hilary Swank appeared in the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie “True Lies” but it was this actress.
Who is: Jamie Lee Curtis

1. Before they’d seen any action, Billy asked Sgt. Breem (Shroom) what being in a firefight was like. Shroom answered, “It’s not like anything, except maybe being raped by ___________.
What are: Angels
2. At the Thanksgiving buffet, a particular patron, How-Wayne says, “I can imagine how hard it is on you young men. To be exposed to that level of violence…” Dime interrupts, “No, we like violence, we like going lethal. If we didn’t like killing people then what’s the point? You might as well send in the __________ to fight the war.”
What is: The Peace Corps
3.  “It’s like giving a pig a Rolex, ma’am, he’s got no appreciation for the finer things in life.”
What is: A Snuggie.
4.  Billy observing the cheerleaders states:  “Their bodies were firm as steel-belted ______.”
What are: Radials.
5.  If ever there was a prime trigger for PTSD you couldn’t do better than this, straight into sound-and-light hell.
What is: The half-time program.


The two words “Long Walk” in the title is a metaphor for this.
Iraq/The War
Note: This theme may be too subjective for a game that needs a right or wrong answer, you may want to come up with another final jeopardy question if you are going to use this template.




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