3.5 disco balls
I recently joined Penguin’s First to Read program: a free membership that gives you access to request upcoming new releases before they hit the shelves. Paris by the Book, by Liam Callanan, was my first selection – of course, due to my obsession with all things Paris. Paris is on the bucket list!
Is Leah a widow? For almost a year, she is unsure. Her husband, Robert, vanishes and I don’t say suddenly, because it is like him to take a break from the family from time to time: this time, he doesn’t leave a note and does not return. Is he leaving her clues to his whereabouts? Conflicted with her emotions, Leah and her daughters, Ellie and Daphne, take a trip to Paris in hopes of finding their father; if he is still alive.
The book does have a slow start, but I felt a need to discover what happened to Robert and kept on reading. About midway through the pace picked up a bit more and I felt more connected to Leah, Ellie, and Daphne.
It is a story about grief and how one’s grief journey is never the same as another, and the need for family to understand each other is essential in moving forward (or to stay in one’s preferred place until ready to move forward). The need to listen, and how often listening is avoided in order to protect one’s own emotions. You are experiencing Leah, Ellie, and Daphne’s journey and will find that you silently fight for them: for their protection.
This is not a read that you pick up if you are looking to brighten your mood. But, its a read that makes you think “what would you do in this position?” The concept was unique and I was not left disappointed when I finished. The ending suited the story.
I would rate this book a 3.5 out of 5. I liked it, but its one that you have to be in a certain mood to read, and need a bit of patience to read through the slower first half.
If you read ‘Paris by the Book’ and agree/disagree, let me know what you thought!