BOOK REVIEW | ALL THE FLOWERS IN PARIS
TITLE: All the Flowers in Paris
AUTHOR: Sarah Jio
PUBLISHER: Ballantine Books
RELEASE DATE: August 13, 2019
GENRE: Historical Fiction
Two women are connected across time by the city of Paris, a mysterious journal, and shocking secrets, sweeping from World War II to the present–for readers of Sarah’s Key.
When Caroline wakes up in a Paris hospital with no memory of her past, she’s confused to learn that she’s lived a sad, reclusive life for years in a sprawling apartment on the Seine. Slowly regaining vague memories of a man and young child, she vows to piece her life back together–though she can’t help but feel she may be in danger. A budding friendship with the chef of a charming nearby restaurant takes her mind off of her foggy past, as does a startling mystery from decades prior…
In Nazi-occupied Paris, young widow Celine lives a quiet life with her father, the local florist, and her daughter, Cosi. When a ruthless German officer discovers the family’s Jewish ancestry, he blackmails Celine, forcing her to become his mistress in exchange for the others’ safety. The trio plans an escape, but their mission goes horribly awry and Celine’s beloved father and daughter are sent away to a cruel fate. Initially distraught, Celine fears the worst. Yet she soon discovers that Cosi has snuck away and followed her into captivity. More motivated than ever, Celine must now fight to hide and protect the person she loves most.
Parallel timelines intersect when Caroline discovers Celine’s diary tucked away in a closet, and it is revealed that the walls of her apartment harbor dark secrets. With the help of a local student from the Sorbonne, she realizes that she may have more in common with Celine than she could ever imagine. (Description from Goodreads)
I’m happy to say I was not disappointed in All the Flowers in Paris during the historical fiction kick I’m on. Sarah Jio captured a heart breaking story that I’m certain could have truly taken place during the war. I cried several times as I followed the characters Celine and Caroline.
First, we follow the character Celine who is a single mother in occupied Paris and her father is part Jewish, so you can imagine the struggles this family faces. Celine suffered so much and did so while protecting her young daughter.
However, we get another perspective through the character Caroline, who’s story takes place decades later when she discovers letters that Celine had written to the man she loved. It is Celine’s story that helps Caroline through her own personal tragedy.
Overall, I absolutely loved this book. I’d like to know when this is going to become a movie, so I can cry my eyes out all over again!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sarah Jio is the New York Times bestselling author of ALWAYS, published by Random House (Ballantine), as well as seven other novels from Penguin Books, including, THE VIOLETS OF MARCH, THE BUNGALOW, BLACKBERRY WINTER, THE LAST CAMELLIA, MORNING GLORY, GOODNIGHT JUNE, and THE LOOK OF LOVE. Sarah is also a journalist who has contributed to The New York Times, Glamour, O, The Oprah Magazine, Glamour, SELF, Real Simple, Fitness, Marie Claire, and many others. She has appeared as a commentator on NPR’s Morning Edition. Her novels are translated into more than 25 languages. Sarah lives in Seattle with her three young boys. (Bio from Goodreads)
Thank you to Ballantine Books for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.