Hello everyone. Well this certainly isn’t the start to 2021 we had hoped for – which makes reading/doing anything that gives you a little comfort all the more important right now.
I am so happy to be able to share my review on An American In Paris with you all, this book was such delight to read.
Paris, 1940: Walking through Montmartre that morning was like the eerie calm right before a storm. The roads were deserted. We carried on, arm in arm, and then finally, we saw them. Columns and columns of soldiers, spreading through the streets like a toxic grey vapour. ‘You must write about this,’ he whispered to me. ‘You must write about the day freedom left Paris.’
As Nazi troops occupy the City of Lights, American journalist Florence is determined to do everything she can to save her adopted home and the man she loves.
Florence had arrived in Paris in 1937 and on a beautiful summer’s day, met and fell in love with Otto, a Jewish artist from Austria, who had fled persecution in his homeland. But as swastikas are draped along the city’s wide boulevards, everything Otto was running from seems to have caught up with him.
Both Florence and Otto begin lending their talents to the Resistance, working to sabotage the Germans right under their noses. Florence’s society columns that, before the war were filled with tales of glamorous Parisian parties, now document life under occupation and hide coded messages for those fighting outside France for freedom. While Otto risks arrest in order to pin up the anti-Nazi posters he designs by candlelight in their tiny apartment.
But with every passing day, things become more dangerous for Otto to remain in Paris. If Florence risks everything by accepting a secret mission, can she ensure his survival so that they can be reunited once the war is over?
A sweeping wartime story that will capture your heart and never let it go. Fans of The Alice Network, The Lost Girls of Paris and My Name is Eva will be absolutely gripped from the very first page.
I adore historical fiction, so when I was given the opportunity to read this book I couldn’t resist. This is the first book by Siobhan Curham that I have read and i can wholeheartedly say that I adored this story.
The story is beautifully written and captures your attention right from the start. I particularly love how the story alternates between two eras, both of which are written atmospherically and truly take you in.
Sage – an Instagram influencer has lost her way and really needs to find her spark again, despite having a life filled with loyal followers and brands that pay her to represent them. She appears to have it all, but she is missing one vital thing – Happiness. Following a difficult night, and fuelled by alcohol, Sage posts an honest video, she is faced with a horrendous backlash of hatred and outrage, all of which is directed at her. This part of the story truly highlighted all that is wrong with social media. Sage is at her lowest point when a stranger from America contacts her. Sam presents an offer Sage can’t refuse. She is offered a calm place to gather her thoughts and recover, whilst she gets answers to the many questions from her past and tries to find away to move forward with her life.
Sage begins reading the memoirs of Florence, which were written several years after the war had finished. The love story between Florence and Otto is so heart breaking, yet heart warming at the same time. However, the thing that truly grasped my attention about her was the sheer determination and inner strength she showed throughout some of the darkest times, and the drive she had to survive whilst at her lowest. When Florence embarks on a solo voyage to start a new life in Paris, she continues to do all she can to to resist the Nazi’s, despite the obvious dangers this would present to her.
As soon as we meet Otto, and discover that he is not only an immigrant but also Jewish – it is obvious that he has arrived in the right place at the wrong time, in a historical sense. The bond that formed between Otto and Florence within the time they were able to spend together in Paris was simply beautiful.
Both women in this story are so very different, yet both of their journeys and struggles had me really praying for positive outcomes to their situations. It was impossible not to feel an emotional connection with these two wonderful characters, which just highlights how beautifully written this book is. The storyline throughout this book is unique and really grasps hold of you right until the end.
I could talk about this book all day long, but i will finish now by saying – if you love a good historical story, that is both heart warming and heart braking, then you definitely need to read this bool. I became so emotionally invested in this story, i know without a doubt it will stay with me for a very long time.
Siobhan Curham is an award-winning author, ghost writer, editor and writing coach. She has also written for many newspapers, magazines and websites, including The Guardian, Breathe magazine, Cosmopolitan, Writers’ Forum, DatingAdvice.com, and Spirit & Destiny. Siobhan has been a guest on various radio and TV shows, including Woman’s Hour, BBC News, GMTV and BBC Breakfast. And she has spoken at businesses, schools, universities and literary festivals around the world, including the BBC, Hay Festival, Cheltenham Festival, Bath Festival, Ilkley Festival, London Book Fair and Sharjah Reading Festival.
Thank you to Sarah Hardy, Bookouture and Siobhan Curham for allowing me to read an ARC of this book in return for my honest review.
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