Title: The Light of Paris
Author: Eleanor Brown
Pages: 368 Pages
Madeleine is trapped—by her family’s expectations, by her controlling husband, and by her own fears—in an unhappy marriage and a life she never wanted. From the outside, it looks like she has everything, but on the inside, she fears she has nothing that matters.
In Madeleine’s memories, her grandmother Margie is the kind of woman she should have been—elegant, reserved, perfect. But when Madeleine finds a diary detailing Margie’s bold, romantic trip to Jazz Age Paris, she meets the grandmother she never knew: a dreamer who defied her strict, staid family and spent an exhilarating summer writing in cafés, living on her own, and falling for a charismatic artist.
Despite her unhappiness, when Madeleine’s marriage is threatened, she panics, escaping to her hometown and staying with her critical, disapproving mother. In that unlikely place, shaken by the revelation of a long-hidden family secret and inspired by her grandmother’s bravery, Madeleine creates her own Parisian summer—reconnecting to her love of painting, cultivating a vibrant circle of creative friends, and finding a kindred spirit in a down-to-earth chef who reminds her to feed both her body and her heart.
Margie and Madeleine’s stories intertwine to explore the joys and risks of living life on our own terms, of defying the rules that hold us back from our dreams, and of becoming the people we are meant to be.
The Light of Paris is a story told during two eras. We have modern day America and 1920s Paris as our two protagonists Madeleine and her grandmother Margie try to navigate adulthood with lives that seemingly parallel each other. Madeleine is stuck in a loveless marriage of convenience. Her whole life is dictated by her bully of a husband: her lack of job, lack of friends, lack of hobbies. Even her weight is controlled by him. Margie faced a similar fate when she was young and knew it was almost a guarantee if she didn’t break free of the confines of debutant life.
Both women have been given the opportunity to change their fate…and they take it.
The Light of Paris is a story of freedom.
I loved this story. I loved how quickly I became invested in the lives of these two women and how you feel desperate for Madeleine to learn from Margie’s mistakes/choices that made her life better. As a bit of a Francophile, I loved Eleanor Brown’s ability to capture the amazing setting of Paris.
The Light of Paris was a big winner for me.
The Light of Paris by Eleanor Brown is available now.
For more information regarding Eleanor Brown (@eleanorwrites) please visit www.eleanor-brown.com.
For more information regarding Penguin (@PenguinUKBooks) please visit www.penguin.co.uk.