Ever since I first visited Paris a couple years ago, I can’t get enough of books set there. I’d read them before my first trip, but there was something about the city that kept me thinking about it after I left (and after I returned from my second trip there a year later) that proves there really can’t be enough books set Paris.
And it seems like there are unlimited topics in fiction and non-fiction that can include Paris as its focal point. I recently read K.S.R. Burns’ new novel, Paris Ever After (Velvet Morning Press, 2018), which comes out today. Congratulations, K.S.R. Burns!
This novel is the sequel to The Paris Effect (Velvet Morning Press, 2016), but is also a stand alone story, so you don’t necessarily have to read them in order. In Paris Ever After, Amy is an American woman who has left her grade A narcissistic husband behind in Arizona to settle into a new life in Paris. She’s found a generous friend in an English woman named Margaret, who lets Amy live with her rent-free. Amy works with Manu, a young French guy who has a lunch delivery service. It’s a perfect life except for a few things:
- Amy’s husband arrives on her 30th birthday to win her back AND stays at the hotel where she stayed on her first trip to Paris;
- Amy is pregnant with their child and her husband up until then hadn’t replied to any of her texts or voice messages (and she didn’t want to tell him this big news on a text or voice mail, so he doesn’t know he’s going to be a father yet); and
- Margaret’s long lost daughter, Sophie, returns and wants Amy out of her room pronto.
What follows is a humorous, page-turning, Bridget Jones-esque story steeped in the French art of the absurd. Amy’s husband starts blowing her off; Sophie is surlier by the day; and Amy needs to scramble to find a place to live.
I won’t give away much more of the story, but it’s a powerful tale of women’s resiliency in dire situations. I found myself laughing out loud and cringing in equal measures. The streets of Paris come alive in K.S.R. Burns’ pages and I felt like I was back in my neighborhood in the Bastille. But even if I had never visited Paris, the story would have been just as captivating.
Happy Publication Day to Paris Ever After!