Living through World War II working in a Paris bookstore with her young daughter, Vivi, and fighting for her life, Charlotte is no victim, she is a survivor. But can she survive the next chapter of her life?
Alternating between wartime Paris and 1950s New York publishing, Ellen Feldman’s Paris Never Leaves You is an extraordinary story of resilience, love, and impossible choices, exploring how survival never comes without a cost.
The war is over, but the past is never past.
Paris Never Leaves You was a breathtaking story of one woman’s journey during a troublesome time in the world. When Charlotte and her young daughter Vivi do what they have to do to survive the hard times, while still finding comfort where they can, she had no idea that the next chapter in her life would force her to accept some unpleasant truths about how she survived and how she would explain those years to her daughter.
When Charlotte starts her new life in New York City, working in a publishing house under a sponsorship from an American publisher, she follows the credo that some secrets are best kept to oneself. But Vivi probes for answers about their lives in Paris, their heritage, and any other moments that can make her feel a part of something.
Will Charlotte be able to finally tell her true story to Vivi and to others? How will she accept the part of herself and her life that she finds unpalatable?
Charlotte discovers that doing what you have to do to stay alive might be unpleasant or hard to accept, but that very acceptance can also be liberating and a way forward. A 5 star read.