REVIEW: ALL THE FLOWERS IN PARIS, BY SARAH JIO

 

When Caroline wakes up in a Paris hospital with no memory of her past, she’s confused to learn that for years she’s lived a sad, reclusive life in a sprawling apartment on the rue Cler. Slowly regaining vague memories of a man and a 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 her foggy past, as does a startling mystery from decades prior.

In Nazi-occupied Paris, a young widow named Céline is trying to build a new life for her daughter while working in her father’s flower shop and hoping to find love again. Then a ruthless German officer discovers her Jewish ancestry and Céline is forced to play a dangerous game to secure the safety of her loved ones. When her worst fears come true, she must fight back in order to save the person she loves most: her daughter.

When Caroline discovers Céline’s letters tucked away in a closet, she realizes that her apartment harbors dark secrets—and that she may have more in common with Céline than she could have ever imagined.

 

My Thoughts: Our first-person narrators, Caroline and Celine, alternately tell the story in All the Flowers in Paris.

Caroline’s story takes place in Paris in 2009, while Celine’s voice comes to us from the same city in 1943.

The women are somehow connected to one another, in that they lived in the same apartment, but decades apart, and some mysterious events further link them.

Celine’s story reminds us of the time in which she lived, WWII, and the German occupation of Paris that brought danger every day.

Caroline’s tale begins with a horrific accident that leaves her with amnesia, presenting another kind of danger.

I loved turning the pages to find out what would happen next for the women, and what answers might give them peace and safety. Unexpected events were always just on the horizon, so I couldn’t stop reading. In the end, as the story came together with serendipitous results, I felt the kind of closure we all want in a book. 5 stars.

***

6 thoughts on “REVIEW: ALL THE FLOWERS IN PARIS, BY SARAH JIO

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