The Paris Wife Book Club Discussion Questions

Please put your comments in for The Paris Wife book club discussion questions below in the comments area.


The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

Discussion Questions:

1. Did you enjoy The Paris Wife, and would you recommend this book?

2. This is a fictionalized account of Ernest Hemingway’s marriage to Hadley Richardson written from mainly Hadley’s perspective. Knowing that Hadley was the first of the one of four wives, you find her narrative convincing and believable? Were you sympathetic towards her?

3. The romance and portrayal of Hadley and Hemingway’s love was steadfast in many ways in light of the times and the circumstances. Did it surprise you that Hemingway’s affair with Hadley’s friend Pauline tore them apart? Did you see it coming?

4.  Hadley ignored some of the signs that their marriage was being torn, do you think she could have saved their marriage? Why do you think she gave up?

5. In Hemingway’s book The Sun Also Rises, based on their travels in Spain and the bull fights, Hadley was not written in the book but their friends were, why do you think that Hadley was deliberately not written in?

6. Ernest was not ready to have a baby, yet it happened quite unexpectedly, do you think this changed Hadley’s and Ernest’s relationship for the good? How do you think it changed Hadley and her view of things?

7. Hadley looses all of Ernest’s work that in a suitcase. Looking back, this was a big turning point in his career. Do you think Ernest ever forgive Hadley? Was he ever grateful for all she did for his career, or was this something taken for granted?

If you have other questions that we have not included in our discussion questions for The Paris Wife, please add your opinions and questions below.

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4 thoughts on “The Paris Wife Book Club Discussion Questions

  1. Hello, Arlene – Happy New Year and just a quick question, if I may? Or is it now 2 questions since I’ve already asked 1 above? Oh dear, it’s three now!!

    Real Question:

    Are these questions for before reading this books or to help recall after?

    The reason I ask is that I often come across so-called religious texts that people already know the answer they WANT rather than allowing people to think for themselves – this isn’t the case here but it made me curious about how a discussion group should be run and how discussion can best be cultivated in any blog, etc.

    All the best and thanks for a cool site.


    1. Hello Andre Our questions are meant to be discussed after reading our book selection. This gives our readers an insight into how each of us felt about the book we have just read and possibly opens up situations within the book brought up by others that we may have missed. These discussions help bring the books to life while listening to other’s thoughts about a particular novel. Thanks for stopping by Andre and for the laughs at your opening statements. I did laugh and enjoyed reading your insight.

  2. Question 6 will be a fun discussion. Honestly, can we ever be ready for a baby? I know I thought I was, but boy, could I have been ever so unprepared. Great discussion questions. =)

    1. Hi Lonna I agree with you. I feel we may be ready for a baby but in reality have no idea how it will change your life. You can’t appreciate what having a baby is like until you experience actual childbirth and hearing the baby cry for the first time and holding that baby for the first time. It is an immensely powerful sensation like no other. I have four of my own all grown now and they all make me laugh and at times cry and it is all worth it! There is no love like it.
      Thanks for your thought Lonna!!

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