1. In The Robber Bride, Tony says that people like
Zenia don''t get into your life unless you invite them in. What
devices does Zenia use to first gain entry into the lives of Tony,
Charis, and Roz? How does she alter her techniques to attract and
2. On the surface, Tony, Charis, and Roz do not appear to be at
all alike, yet similarities do in fact exist. For example, during
their childhoods they each developed what could be called "dual"
identities. How do the psychological devices they developed as
children help or hinder them? In what ways do their own children
differ from them?
3. While seeming all-powerful, the constantly changing Zenia
lacks a centre of her own. Is it possible for women to achieve the
same kinds of power that men do in today''s society, or do they
have to break rules and operate as outlaws? Do women have a kind of
power that is different from male power?
4. Magic can mean two things: sleight of hand played by stage
magicians, and true "magic," or supernatural ability. What role
does each kind of "magic" play in the novel, if any?
5. The restaurant where Zenia reappears is called The Toxique.
What role does naming - of persons and places - play in this
6. Is there a difference between the lies others tell and
Zenia''s lies? Are there "good" lies and "bad" lies? Do the hearers
play a role in the construction of these lies?
Discussion questions provided courtesy of Anchor Books, a division
of Random House, Inc., New York. All rights reserved.