This reading group guide for Exit the Actres includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Priya Parmar. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.INTRODUCTION
It is seventeenth-century London: England is at peace, King Charles II has been restored to the throne, and young Ellen Gwyn has a decision to make. Does she obey her mother and follow her sister Rose into the demi monde
of prostitution or does she risk all and chart her own course? Ellen, better know to history as ‘Nell’ defies her family and becomes an orange girl, selling fruit at Covent Garden’s famous Theatre Royal. Her risk brings speedy rewards and at the theatre she soon rises to become the most popular actress in London.
Outrageous, bright, and brimming with wit, beauty and grace, she charms all who meet her, quickly befriending Poet Laureate John Dryden, playwright Aphra Behn, famed libertine Johnny, Earl of Rochester and the last of the cross dressing actors, Edward Kynaston. She is courted by men named Charles: Charles Hart, leading actor, Lord Charles Buckhurst wealthy, young wit and finally the most famous Charles of all: King Charles II of England.
Weaving back and fo