Lost Girls of Paris (Jenoff) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
We'll add publisher questions if and when they're available; in the meantime, use our LitLovers talking points to help start a discussion for THE LOST GIRLS OF PARIS ... and then take off on your own:

1. What possesses Grace Healy to open the suitcase at Grand Central and abscond with the photos? Would you have done so?

2. What do we learn about Eleanor Trigg, who initially was a secretary at SOE? Why is she given the responsibility to put together the spy team—what qualifies her in terms of experience and character? (Eleanor is based on the real life of Vera Atkins: see below.)

3. What does Eleanor look for in her recruits? Why does she select each of the women she does?

4. Talk about the training process for the women and the rigors involved. Would you have made the grade? What would have been most difficult for you?

5. What about Marie, whose point of view we follow? During training, she has trouble mastering a number of the tasks, so much so that she would appear unqualified. Where you surprised at her later accomplishments?

6. The story has three different points of view and moves back and forth through time. Did you appreciate the shifting perspectives and chronology? Or was it difficult to follow at times?

7. Why do you think the romance between Marie and Julian is limited to eye contact and fleeting glances. Would you have preferred to have more of their relationship develop on the page, rather than off (not counting his profession of love much later in the book)?

8. Of the 12 women selected, do you have a favorite; do some impress you more than others?

9. Most of all, talk about the incredible courage all of these women possessed—and the horrific, life-threatening dangers they faced.

(Questions by LitLovers. Please feel free to use them, online and off, with attribution. Thanks.)
Consider two nonfiction works on Britain's female spies:
• Helms, Sarah. A Life in Secret: Vera Atkins and the Missing Agents of WWII. Knopf Doubleday (2006).
• Loftis, Larry. Code Name: Lise: The True Story of the Woman Who Became World War II's Most Highly Decorated Spy. Gallery Books (2019)

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