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June 27, 2016

The Little Paris Bookshop

Little Paris BookshopThe Little Paris Bookshop

By: Nina George

If you enjoy books about books, you will love Nina George’s The Little Paris Bookshop. Monsieur Perdu, the main character in the novel, is a bookseller whose literary apothecary is located on a barge on the Seine in Paris. He lives a solitary life, prescribing books for his customers to solve their problems—whether they want his help or not. Unexpectedly, Perdu comes across a letter that was in a table he donated to his new neighbor, a woman going through a nasty divorce. After reading the letter he had always refused to open (which explained why his lover left him 20 years ago); he takes off on his bookstore on the barge with his neighbor, Max Jordan, an author who is tortured with writer’s block. However, before Perdu leaves he makes a connection with his neighbor, Catherine, who he writes to throughout his journey.

After 20 years of grieving for his lost love while working in his literary apothecary, Perdu begins his spontaneous, grand adventure. As spontaneous adventures are by nature unplanned, Perdu and Max find themselves without money to purchase the necessities and survive by bartering books and taking odd jobs to find work. Through the journey, they meet a cast of characters including the mysterious anonymous author of Perdu’s most beloved book.

This is a really fun novel. Perdu is a middle-aged man who has accepted his life and the loneliness that comes along with it. However, he embarks on a quest that is driven by grief and guilt but turns into his salvation. Like all my favorite books (and life in general), this one is laugh-out loud funny mixed with moments of real sadness.
If this sounds interesting, you might also enjoy Gabrielle Zevin’s, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry.


Review By:  Heidi Herald