Title: The Girl who reads on the Metro

Author: Christine Feret-Fleury

Pages: 175 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

The Blurb

For fans of The Little Paris Bookshop and The Elegance of the Hedgehog, The Girl Who Reads on the Métro is the French phenomenon by Christine Féret-Fleury ready to charm book-lovers everywhere . . .

When Juliette takes the métro to her loathed office job each morning, her only escape is in books – she avidly reads on her journey and imagines what her fellow commuters’ choices might say about them.

But when, one day, she decides to alight the train a few stops early and meets Soliman – the mysterious owner of the most enchanting bookshop Juliette has ever seen – she is sure her life will never be the same again . . .

For Soliman also believes in the power of books to change the course of a life – entrusting his passeurs with the task of giving each book to the person who needs it most – and he thinks Juliette is perfect for the job.

And so, leaving her old life behind, Juliette will discover the true power a book can have . . .

The Review

I really love books that have been translated into English. That probably sounds a bit weird but the books that I have read in this category over the past few years have always surprised me with their originality and quirky nature. The Girl who reads on the Metro by Christine Feret-Fleury fits seamlessly into this collection.

Whilst I know the story of Juliette will not change my life, it certainly changed my day when I read it. The one thing I take from it is that other people can articulate the love of books and the love of reading so well. Frequently I stopped reading just to pause and fully take in the line that I had just read. The writing – and indeed, the translation – was magical.

The Girl who reads on the Metro by Christine Feret-Fleury is available now.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

Title: The Day We Meet Again

Author: Miranda Dickinson

Pages: 384 Pages

Publisher: HQ

The Blurb

Their love story started with goodbye…

The brand-new novel from The Sunday Times bestselling author, Miranda Dickinson.

‘We’ll meet again at St Pancras station, a year from today. If we’re meant to be together, we’ll both be there. If we’re not, it was never meant to be . . .’

Phoebe and Sam meet by chance at St Pancras station. Heading in opposite directions, both seeking their own adventures, meeting the love of their lives wasn’t part of the plan. So they make a promise: to meet again in the same place in twelve months’ time if they still want to be together.

But is life ever as simple as that?

This is a story of what-ifs and maybes – and how one decision can change your life forever…

The Review

I love train stations. That may sound weird but bear with me. Having done the long distance thing for nearly 7 years, for me train stations are synonymous with meeting my partner after a few weeks away from each other. The flip side of that is that there is always the sadness of going back home but bygones. So when I read The Day We Meet Again by Miranda Dickinson which uses St Pancras Station – once the scene of a reunion of me and my fiancé – I knew I was going to love this book.

The Day We Meet Again is one of those frustratingly wonderful books that you want to simultaneously hug and throw across the room. You yell at the characters, you will them to make better choices, you groan at the fact that they are not marionettes that you can manipulate to do your bidding but I suppose if I had that power then the book would have been much shorter and the pay off less great.

With Phoebe and Sam, Miranda Dickinson has made two fantastically likeable yet flawed characters. She has the perfect set up which has allowed them both to be selfless in their selfishness so when they pull their heads out of their bottoms they can be the perfect companion for each other. All the while you travel to some amazing places. Dickinson really has worked her magic in this book. It is a lovely read and a perfect gift for the romance reader in your life.

The Day We Meet Again by Miranda Dickinson is available now.

For more information regarding Miranda Dickinson (@wurdsmyth) please visit www.miranda-dickinson.com.

For more information regarding HQ (@HQstories) please visit www.hqstories.co.uk.

Title: The Light of Paris

Author: Eleanor Brown

Pages: 368 Pages

Publisher: Penguin

The Blurb

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 Review

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.

Title: Lola Offline

Author: Nicola Doherty

Pages: 288 Pages

Publisher: Hachette Children’s Group/Orion Children’s Books

The Blurb

On the internet, there are no take-backs… LOLA OFFLINE is a teen romantic comedy set in Paris, perfect for fans of Holly Bourne, Sophie Kinsella and Stephanie Perkins.

Delilah Hoover has gone dark. She’s quit social media, moved to Paris and changed her name to Lola Maxwell. Because she made a mistake – one she can’t take back. It was all over Twitter, and it’s still the first thing that comes up when you Google her.

Paris is a fresh start, in a new school with new friends including smooth student politician Tariq. With awkward dates, tipsy afternoons and a perfect kiss, Lola’s life as a normal teenager could be back on track … But can she ever tell people who she really is? And what happens if they find out first?

The Review

I’ve long been a fan of Nicola Doherty’s books and I requested Lola Offline from NetGalley ages ago and for some reason I didn’t get round to reading it until just recently. Like Doherty’s other books, I really enjoyed Lola Offline.

Lola Offline tells the story of Delilah who has fled her normal life to live in Paris under the moniker of Lola. Delilah is fleeing from a mistake that she has made that ended up making her internet famous for all the wrong reasons.

Rather than embracing her mistake and dealing with the fall out she opts to hide. But in a world saturated by social media you begin to wonder can a person really ever truly hide from their past?

Nicola Doherty’s story really hit a nerve with me for two reasons. The first being because I wrote a blog post once that ended up getting a ridiculous number of views within the space of 24 hours. Now don’t get me wrong, for someone who blogs that is generally a good thing, however, the post was not about books it was about a health condition I had and I was very unsettled by the amount of people that read it. I got over it but for a good week I felt really unnerved. The second reason is that I work in a high school and the amount of problems that we encounter on a daily basis because of Instagram or Facebook is ridiculous. The insidiousness of social media is becoming more and more prevalent and Doherty addresses this very matter. Personally, I think she is brave to do so. If just one member of her target audience of young adults reads this book and thinks about something before they post it on social media then Doherty has made a massive impact.

Lola Offline by Nicola Doherty is available now.

For more information regarding Nicola Doherty (@nicoladoherty_) please visit www.nicoladohertybooks.com.

For more information regarding Hachette Children’s Group (@HachetteKids) or Orion Children’s Books (@the_orionstar) please visit www.hachettechildrens.co.uk.

Title: Rooftoppers

Author: Katherine Rundell

Pages: 278 Pages

Publisher: Faber & Faber

The Blurb

Winner of the Blue Peter Book Award and the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, and shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal.

Already being proclaimed a classic in children’s literature and compared to the likes of Roald Dahl and Eva Ibbotson, Katherine Rundell’s Rooftoppers merges fantasy and historical fiction with sophisticated lyrical prose and vivid imagery that will delight middle grade readers, tweens, teens, and parents and teachers alike.

Join plucky heroine Sophie, her eccentric guardian Charles, and her intrepid orphan allies on the rooftops of Victorian Paris, as they encounter suspense and adventure that will keep kids of all ages on the edge of their seats right to the heartwarming end.

My mother is still alive, and she is going to come for me one day.

Everyone thinks that Sophie is an orphan. Found floating in a cello case and swaddled in a Beethoven score, she is the only recorded female survivor of a shipwreck on the English Channel. But Sophie remembers seeing her mother wave for help…

Charles, a fellow survivor and an eccentric scholar, finds Sophie and brings her home to his London bachelor flat. Raised in a quirky home filled with music, words and love (though questionable diet), Sophie grows into a free-spirited tomboy with a taste for Shakespeare and the unshakeable belief that anything is possible. And you should never ignore a possible.

So when the child welfare agency in its bureaucratic wisdom threatens to send Sophie to an orphanage, the optimistic girl and her odd guardian flee to Paris on a quest to find her mother, starting with the only clue she has – the address of the cello maker.

Secured in an attic to evade the French authorities, Sophie escapes through the skylight and meets Matteo and his network of rooftoppers – homeless urchins who tightrope walk above the busy streets below, dining on pigeons and snails alongside the gargoyles and bell tower of Notre Dame. Together they set out on an unimaginable adventure, scouring the city for Sophie’s mother before she is caught and sent back to London – and most importantly, before she loses hope.

Readers who enjoyed the Lemony Snicket books, Ellen Potter’s The Kneebone Boy, Cornelia Funke’s The Thief Lord, and Sally Gardner’s I, Coriander will want to put Rooftoppers on their “Must Read” list.

(AMAZON BLURB)

The Review

Rooftoppers is an absolute dream of a story.

I work in a high school and I have been challenged with getting a group of reluctant readers to start to enjoy reading so I chose Rooftoppers. Having not read the book before you may be wondering why I chose this book. Was it the plethora of excellent reviews that it has received over the years? No. Was it the cover? Pretty as it the cover is, no. The fact is that I chose it because we have several copies in the school library and I have a limited budget.

I was incredibly lucky though because Rooftoppers is a magical story of unlikely friendship, parental love and how it is possible to choose your family.

Sophie is a heroine to fall in love with. She is fearless and feisty and everything a young girl should be. Her guardian, Charles is quirky and memorable. And the cast of characters that she meets along the way are brilliant.

I am so glad that I chose this book for my readers!

Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell is available now.

For more information regarding Katherine Rundell (@kdbrundell) please visit www.bloomsbury.com.

For more information regarding Faber & Faber (@FaberBooks) please visit www.faber.co.uk.