☆☆➹⁀☆ 4 stars ☆➹⁀☆☆
About the Book:
Le Vie En Rose
Bookshop owner Sarah Smith has been offered the opportunity to exchange bookshops with her new Parisian friend for 6 months! And saying yes is a no-brainer – after all, what kind of a romantic would turn down a trip to Paris? Even if it does mean leaving the irresistible Ridge Warner behind, Sarah’s sure she’s in for the holiday of a lifetime – complete with all the books she can read!
Picturing days wandering around Shakespeare & Co, munching on croissants, sipping café au laits and people-watching on the Champs-Elysees Sarah boards the plane. But will her dream of a Parisian Happily-Ever-After come true? Or will Sarah realise that the dream isn’t quite as rosy in reality…
I’m new to author Rebecca Raisin, and I found her story to be sweet and heartwarming. I did not realize that The Little Bookshop on the Seine was a follow-on from a prior book of the author’s (The Bookshop on the Corner), and I had no problem jumping into the storyline.
When Sophie and Sarah trade places, I would have thought that Sophie would leave Sarah with more detailed information about her business, given how tight she held the reins. While Sophie expected Sarah to keep everything the same, she makes many changes at Sarah’s business. Sarah’s business thrives with the changes, and Sophie’s business declines under Sophie’s strict mandates.
Sarah jumps at the chance for this adventure, and she quickly learns that the grass is not greener on the other side, but a different shade of brown. She leaves coddling parents and supportive friends for a vision of romantically exploring Paris after she closes up the bookshop everyday. What she gets is a difficult staff, antiquated business practices, tedious bookkeeping, and a long-distance boyfriend whose phone keeps getting answered by his female coworker while they are traveling on assignment.
Her only respite comes from the mysterious gentleman who spends most days quietly in one of the bookshop’s obscure rooms. When they discover a bundle of old love letters, they set off to discover who the correspondents are and if the two ever realized their dreams of a life together.
I loved Ms. Raisin’s vivid description of Paris and the various secondary characters. I felt that I accompanied Sarah on her journey to bistros, back-alley antique shops, and boulangeries. I adored the Paris bookshop’s staff and the complexity they brought to the story. Sarah’s relationships with each of them creates a richer story, and those relationships make the book more contemporary fiction/women’s literature rather than a romance.
I struggled with the viability of Sarah and Ridge’s relationship throughout the story, and I spent much of the book wishing Sarah would let go of her obsession with Ridge and adventurously take in all that she could of Paris. In the end, author Rebecca Raisin gives her readers a message of friendship, love, and self-confidence. Even though it took entirely too long for timid Sarah to find her way, she eventually comes into her own in Paris, and I finished the story believing that Sarah grew confident enough to tackle anything.
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About the Author: Rebecca Raisin is the author of several novels, including the beloved Little Paris series and the Gingerbread Café trilogy, and her short stories have been published in various anthologies and fiction magazines. You can follow Rebecca on Facebook, and at www.rebeccaraisin.com
Social Links: Author Website | Twitter: @JaxandWillsMum |
Facebook: @RebeccaRaisinAuthor | Instagram: @RebeccaRaisinWrites
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