Thirty Days in Paris by Veronica Henry
Last week I needed a holiday and booked a couple of days off work. We had a lovely time, didn't do very much but we watched The Shop Round the Corner, had lunches out, read books and of course enjoyed a large number of cuddles with Hattie. It was a much needed break and I feel a lot better for it.
I've been waiting to review this book for a little while having been lent this by a lovely friend in the village. It features my favourite city on Earth. Paris holds many lovely memories for me and my husband as it where we took our first holiday together as a couple. It was also where our tradition of purchasing a Christmas ornament from the cities we visit started. So you had better believe that any novel about this city already has my heart. Let's get started!
Years ago, Juliet left a little piece of her heart in Paris - and now, separated from her husband and with her children flying the nest, it's time to get it back!
So she puts on her best red lipstick, books a cosy apartment near Notre Dame and takes the next train out of London.
Arriving at the Gare du Nord, the memories come flooding back; bustling street cafe's, cheap wine in candlelit bars and a handsome boy with glittering eyes.
But Juliet has also been keeping a secret for over two decades - and she begins to realise it's impossible to move forwards without first looking back.
I knew this would be a good book, when the friend lending this book, said she wanted it back. (She also said she wanted to be Juliet and be in Paris for 30 days but that is another story!) I will confess this is the first Veronica Henry novel I have read, and having cantered through this book, will definitely be reading some more.
The novel is everything Parisian. Think baguettes and soft cheese enjoyed by the banks of the Seine. Strong coffee, people watching and visits to iconic landmarks. This has it all including the beautiful fashions. Designer shops, elegant clothes, and a celebration of all those moments involving a good meal, a chic piece of clothing and a breath to stare at beautiful artwork.
Juliet is delightful. Throwing herself into a Parisian way of life whilst dealing with painful memories from her time as a nanny to a French family. But that time was also one of discovery as she met her first love and fell headlong for him.
We are witness to a more mature Juliet, one who is processing the lessons of the past with this new version of herself. She is aided by that first love, Olivier and Nathalie, an old friend who she reconnects with and who helps her reconnect with herself. If you surround yourself with good friends and family and great coffee you can't go wrong!
Interestingly I first saw this novel on the bookshelves as a summer read with its flashy pink and gold cover. The novel itself is set in an Autumn in the lead up to Christmas. So is actually perfect for this time of year. It will make you want to book a ticket on Eurostar, rent a small Parisian flat for a month and inhale the city of light.
I loved this book, an easy 5 Star read for me, and an author I will definitely be returning to.