This reading group guide for The Mistaken Wife includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Rose Melikan. 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
Mary Finch is feeling dissatisfied with her sedate life in the English countryside, so she is thrilled when the mysterious Mr. Shy once again offers her a chance to spy for her country—only this time, she must travel to Paris, the heart of enemy territory and the scene of so much Revolutionary violence. Keeping her plans secret—even from the dashing Captain Holland—Mary becomes the “wife” of an American artist, Samuel Vangenzen.
Vangenzen reveals to Mary that he is already married to a former slave, Minta, with whom he lives in Paris. The two women are wary of each other, especially as Mary’s efforts to disrupt important Franco-American negotiations expose both the Vangenzens to danger. Mary’s difficulties grow when she discovers that Captain Holland is also in Paris, charged with recovering a strange new invention that could turn the tide of war. She and Holland must hurry to complete their tasks while avoiding the suspicions of the French authorities, including their old adv