The Secret Thief
Judith Jaeger

For book groups

The Secret Thief is about the complex relationship between parent and child, mother and daughter, which makes for great discussion. Many book groups have selected The Secret Thief for just this reason. It's also a book your group members will want to read from cover to cover.

Judy has attended several book group discussions of The Secret Thief and finds it a treat every time. Contact Judy at to invite her to your group's discussion of The Secret Thief.


"Meeting Judy and getting her to come to our book club turned out to be a most rewarding experience for all of us!  Not only did we get to share our thoughts about 'The Secret Thief,' but we got to learn behind the scenes information about its creation and how Judy managed problems along the way. She was a very charming and enlightening guest!  We're all eagerly awaiting her next publication!"

- Linda Trifilo

"Judith's visit to our book club made the book more interesting because of the insight she gave as to where her ideas originated. It was fascinating to learn that she didn't know how the story would play out but, that the story evolved as she developed the characters. She was very outgoing and receptive to hearing our thoughts on 'The Secret Thief.'"

- Janice Lefebvre

"Months later our reading group is still reveling in the delightful evening we had with Judith Jaeger discussing 'The Secret Thief.' We initially were interested in the book because we had just discussed a nonfiction book on Munchausen by Proxy, and we were intrigued as to how Judith would weave a tale around such a difficult subject. Her research on the topic was complete, and the plot enveloped us all from the start. Our group discussions usually revolve around character and plot development, but what a wonderful treat to have the author present to tell us her motivations and inspirations as the story developed, how and why she came to be a writer, and where her ideas come from! We are anxiously awaiting Judith's next book, and she will always hold a special place in our group's collective heart - both as an author and a person."

- Betsey Burtis

"A wonderful book that made me want to keep reading...Fascinating book about family relationships and hidden secrets that every family has."

- From Flo Muller-Reed's book group


These questions can help fuel your book group's exploration of The Secret Thief. Use them as a guide or just to get the conversation started.

When did you first realize what was really happening between Connie and her mother?

What moments in the story revealed it to you?

Why do you think it took Connie so long to figure it out?

What is the motivation behind Connie's kleptomania? Behind her running?

What motivated Grandmother's actions throughout Connie's life? Could she have done things differently? Why or why not?

What role, if any, did the setting of the story play for you?

What did you think about Connie at the beginning of the story? Did your understanding of her change? If so, how?

What about Grandmother--was your understanding of her different at the beginning and the end? Why?

What do you think happens to Connie in the future, after the story ends? What do you want her future to be like?

If you could ask author Judith Jaeger one question, what would it be? (Invite her to your book group, and maybe she can answer it!)