Reading Group Guide for The Child Inside

27 May 2014

By Pan Macmillan

Questions for readers

1) Discuss the title of the book and its significance to the story.

2) Discuss the prologue of the book, and how effective this is in opening the novel.

3) Talk about the author's use of language and writing style.

4) Which event/moment in the novel acts as a catalyst to the rest of the story?

5) What themes does the author explore? Include in your discussion: the difficulties of parenting, the importance of belonging, the implications of having an affair and the extent to which events in a person’s life can haunt their present.

6) Describe the main characters—their personality traits, motivations, inner qualities. Why do they behave in the way they do? Are their actions justified?

7) How do characters change or evolve throughout the course of the story? Which events trigger such changes?

8) Discuss the relationship between Rachel and her son Jono. How does their relationship compare with Rachel’s own childhood and her relationship with her parents and sister?

9) Discuss the distant relationship Rachel has with her husband Andrew. What are the main factors putting a strain on their marriage?

10) Talk about the secondary characters. Did any stand out for you?

11) Are there situations and/or characters you can identify with, and if so how?

12) Which passage from the book stood out to you the most?

13) If you could ask the author a question, what would you ask?

14) Discuss the ending of the book.

15) Have you read the author’s previous novel This Perfect World? If so how do the themes of The Child Inside compare?