By: Anita Hughes
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication Date: October 2016
Reviewed by: Diana Hettinger
Review Date: October 7, 2016
Isabel Lawson and her fiance Neil can’t agree on anything for their wedding. They are to be married in a week and are getting nowhere. When Neil makes the choice to take over his family farm, Isabel freezes. Being a successful financial professional, she can’t imagine throwing the career away that she worked so hard for. So, with this in mind, a week before the wedding, she calls it off. With the honeymoon being booked and paid for, he suggests that she go on a vacation herself, after all, she had always wanted to go to Paris at Christmas. With a successful career behind her and a past of failed relationships, she takes it upon herself to see and do as much as she can until she throws herself back into her career. With a renewed sense of independence and some light heartache, she sets off for Paris. Upon arrival at the luxurious Crillon, she finds that she got much more than she bargained for.
In the rush of excitement to see the Champs-Élysées, she locks herself out on the balcony. With nothing else to do, she throws her shoe to a nearby balcony where handsome Alec, a children’s book author and illustrator, finds her and rescues her. Alec’s fiance, ironically, left him for another man before their wedding. As a poor writer, he was not successful enough or good enough for his fiance and she leaves for Australia with a more handsome Cricket player. Both of these newly single people, being alone in Paris at Christmas, and wanting to make the most of it, set off to explore the city and leave as much of the past behind as they can. As their adventures begin, they wind up at the Christmas markets. It is at the Christmas markets that they meet a fortune teller who reads Isabel’s fortune. As someone who relies solely on numbers and reason, it does not make sense how the fortune teller’s predictions keep coming true. As time goes on, she believes more and more, but is everything always what it seems?
I absolutely devoured this book in three days, however, I could have easily consumed it in one afternoon had I had the time. Not only is every detail descriptive enough to picture the surroundings and feel as if you are there, but it is just magical enough to make you feel like it’s Christmas no matter what time of year you read it. With twists, turns and magical predictions, you will find yourself believing in magic, no matter how much you also rely on reason. I finished Christmas in Paris wanting more and feeling as if the story was unfinished and I am dying for a part two.
Quill says: Christmas in Paris is a warm and romantic read that will leave you with hope in your heart and a spirit of wanderlust.