The Paris Library: A Novel

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The Paris Library is a story told by traveling back and forth between Paris in 1939 and Montana in 1983.

In 1939 on the eve of World War II, Odile Souchet lands her dream job at the American Library in Paris. When the Nazis march into town, she stands with her fellow librarians, protecting the library and aiding the resistance in her small way by providing those readers deemed “undesirables” with books and hope.

Lily is a teenager in 1983 dealing with her mother’s horrible terminal illness and an emotionally distant father. Enter Odile, the elderly, secretive neighbor who steps in when Lily needs her most. Gradually, they realize that they share a love of language and a lot of the same deep feelings, and a friendship develops.

This novel is a history lesson but with a difference. We have read many accounts of fascism and the horrors of the Paris occupation, but here we FEEL the long-lasting and long-reaching heartbreak that the small, personal betrayals caused. It is also a testament to intergenerational friendships, to never being too old—or too young—to change, and to the healing power of books.

My copy is already passing among my friends and many a cup of tea and long, wonderful chats have been the result. Highly recommend!


Reviewed By:

Author Janet Skeslien Charles
Star Count 5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 368 pages
Publisher Atria Books
Publish Date 2021-Feb-09
ISBN 9780358418610
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue April 2021
Category Historical Fiction
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