Nine Times November 11, 1918

Book Review of "Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War" by various authors. It isn't often that a group of authors come together to make a collection of short stories. From what I can see, most collections with various authors are ones that a publisher collected, often from a slew of single-author … Continue reading Nine Times November 11, 1918

Books on the Waters

Book Review for "The Little Paris Bookshop" by Nina George. Jean Perdu has a bookshop in Paris, but it isn't on one of their charming streets. No, his bookshop is on a barge on the Seine. That isn't the only thing about it that's extraordinary; Jean has a penchant for finding just the right book … Continue reading Books on the Waters

Less than Picture Perfect

Book Review of "Lessons in French" by Hilary Reyl. What budding artist wouldn't grab the chance to work in Paris with the world-famous photojournalist Lydia Schell? For Katherine, who just finished Yale, it will also be like going home, having lived in Paris as a young girl when her father was dying from cancer. Back … Continue reading Less than Picture Perfect

The Last Squeeze is the Sweetest

Book Review of "Five Quarters of the Orange" by Joanne Harris. This is the story of Framboise - no, not a bottle of raspberry liqueur (thank heavens), but rather a woman by that name from a farm on the river Loire in the French village of Les Laveuses. This is partially the story of Framboise's … Continue reading The Last Squeeze is the Sweetest

The Wine Tells All

Book Review of "Blackberry Wine" by Joanne Harris. Jay Mackintosh is a writer whose first hit novel "Jackapple Joe" revolved around a man he met as a boy in the late 70s in Pog Hill an ex-mining town in England. It's now 1999, however, and he hasn't written anything serious since - only junk novels … Continue reading The Wine Tells All

The Cast and Curse of Genius

Book Review of "Rodin's Lover" by Heather Webb. The name of Auguste Rodin is synonymous with the emotionally charged sculptures he created, and practically everyone recognizes his iconic "Thinker." However, far fewer people know the name or the work of Camille Claudel, his student and the woman who shocked the art world of Paris, because … Continue reading The Cast and Curse of Genius

A Taste for French Gusto

Book Review for "Mastering the Art of French Eating" by Ann Mah. Ann Mah spent three years in France with her diplomat husband. She used that time to find out more about some of their culinary specialties - how they became famous, their history and how they're made. Of course, when it comes to writing … Continue reading A Taste for French Gusto

The Making of a French Empress

Book Review for "Becoming Josephine" by Heather Webb. It took 30 years for Marie Josèphe Rose Tascher de La Pagerie to go from being a young Creole girl from Martinique, to being Rose de Beauharnais and finally becoming Josephine Bonaparte and the first Empress of the French Empire, before she was divorced from Napoleon. Her … Continue reading The Making of a French Empress

Tasty but not Scrumptious

Book review of "Chocolat" by Joanne Harris. When Vianne Rocher, her daughter Anouk (with Pantoufle - an imaginary rabbit) breeze into the small, religious, French town of Lansquenet-sous-Tannes with the intention of opening a chocolate shop during the holy time of Lent, you just know that there's going to be some problems. Since Vianne is … Continue reading Tasty but not Scrumptious

A Pre-Revolutionary French Feast of Fiction

Book review of "The Last Banquet" by Jonathan Grimwood. In pre-revolutionary France, Jean-Marie d'Aumout's earliest memories are of eating beetles from the dung heap outside his dead parent's home. After being rescued from this, he’s brought to a school for other sons of the impoverished aristocracy. There he begins a new life, one that brings … Continue reading A Pre-Revolutionary French Feast of Fiction