Parisian Getaway on Your Summer Wishlist? This Book Can Help.

Saturday, May 28, 2016



Summer is here and it’s time for those of us with flexible schedules and cash to burn to plan epic vacations abroad.  But what about the rest of us, slogging relentlessly away at the daily grind?  Those for whom summer might contain the occasional afternoon at the pool or a family reunion back home, but lack extended romantic European sojourns?

For us, there’s Eleanor Brown’s The Light of Paris, an upcoming novel I was lucky enough to score an advance reader’s edition of through my job.  The story features two heroines, related by blood and the challenges they face, but separated by time and location.  In 1999, Madeleine, worn down by an arrogant husband and a lackluster marriage, returns to her hometown in Tennessee, where dormant dreams and her grandmother’s notebooks cause her to rekindle a love for her art and herself.  Her grandmother Margie’s own romance and self-discovery in post-World War I Paris, as chronicled in her journals, pave the way for Madeleine’s transformation.  Together, the two women offer shimmering insights into the spirit of Paris — one, quite literally, from the stories of her experiences there, and the other, from cultivating the same sense of freedom and joy that filled the city during that era.  

While the evolution of these two characters definitely made an impression, it was the way in which Brown’s deft hand and eye for sparkling detail captured the Paris of 1924 that most exhilarated me.  The city as she describes it glitters with youth and teems with the reckless sense of life that followed monumental tragedy.  In much the same way, this novel will rejuvenate you, offering a reprieve from the weary and mundane realities of the everyday, whisking you off to dimly lit jazz clubs and sidewalk cafés where you’ll chat with Surrealists and dance with dashing Frenchmen.  If ever there were a book to cart you off to another place and time, my friends, this is it… and it will cost much less to purchase than a plane ticket to Paris itself.

The Light of Paris hits bookstores July 12, 2016. 


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