Sunday, 4 December 2016
A Week in Paris by Rachel Hore
1961: Born on the day that WW2 broke out, 21-year-old Fay Knox cannot remember her early childhood in London, before she moved to a Norfolk village with her mother, Kitty. Though she has seen a photograph of her father, she does not recall him either. He died, she was told, in an air raid, and their house destroyed along with all their possessions. Why then, on a visit to 1961: Born on the day that WW2 broke out, 21-year-old Fay Knox cannot remember her early childhood in London, before she moved to a Norfolk village with her mother, Kitty. Though she has seen a photograph of her father, she does not recall him either. He died, she was told, in an air raid, and their house destroyed along with all their possessions. Why then, on a visit to Paris on tour with her orchestra, does a strange series of events suggest that she spent the war there instead? There is only one clue to follow, an address on the luggage label of an old canvas satchel. But will the truth hurt or heal?
1937: Eugene Knox, a young American doctor, catches sight of 19-year-old Kitty Travers on the day she arrives in Paris, and cannot get her out of his mind. She has come to study the piano at the famed Conservatoire, and lodges at a convent near Notre Dame. Eugene and Kitty will fall in love, marry and have a daughter, but France's humiliating defeat by Germany is not far behind, and the little family must suffer life under Nazi occupation. Some Parisians keep their heads down and survive, others collaborate with the enemy while others resist. The different actions of Eugene, Kitty and their friends will have devastating consequences that echo down the generations.
7/10 from me.
This is the first book that I've read by Rachel Hore, although I have several sat patiently waiting to be read on my TBR (to be read) pile.
This is a dual time frame novel set in and around Paris before and during WWII and in the 60's. I quite enjoy dual time frame novels and find it easy to flit between past and present as the story dictates.
The story tells the tale of Fay Knox in the 60's as she returns to Paris with the orchestra that she plays in. As events take a few unexpected turns, Fay finds herself on a journey of discovery where certain secrets from her past are revealed. Her Mother Kitty, was a teenager when she arrived in Paris. Fate saw her meeting, falling in love and marrying Eugene Knox. Life wasn't easy for the young couple and their daughter Fay soon followed. As occupied France became hard for everyone, we learn through Fay how her Parents learned to cope and get on with their day to day life. It soon becomes apparent that people didn't know who to trust.
This story has it all romance, history, secrets and friendship. At it's heart is Paris though, the city of romance. Grab a copy and read on to be taken on a journey with Fay and the rest of the characters.
It was an easy read and is well written, but to me it possibly could have been a little bit shorter. I seemed to get lost along the way.