Tuesday, February 17, 2015

A Paris Wife, Paula McLain

This particular book has been on my "To read" list for quite some time. Every time I would go to a bookstore, I would find it and say, Oh-I want to read that! Then I'd come home and it would sit on my bookcase and sit and sit while I read other books. Well, I finally just read it.
It took me a while to read something again post-Me Before You by JoJo Moyes and this one did seem like it was going to be rather mediocre in comparison. But I did it anyway.
It read ok. I kept turning the pages to see the next episode in their life, but it wasn't anything like Life of Pi or Me Before You. It wasn't particularly gripping or suspenseful, but I could never find a good point to stop at.
I found it anti-climatic and perhaps that's what kept me reading, I kept wanting to get to a big head of action and have it be dramatic and full of conflict or something...nope, never really happened. What did happen, was that it read much like real life. Little problems, little tiffs, little "I should have done better's" That's how life goes, OH-shoot, I said something really awful to so and so. I feel awful, I will apologize. So you do and they accept and admit part of the problem was their fault too and all is good to go or you sweep it under the rug and hope for better to come.
So I guess if you want to read basically an everyday life drama, this is the book. Of course it's not exactly something I can relate to because we are talking about Ernest Hemingway and the 1920's and being a part of the elite, traveling, and having nannies.
The other thing that kept me reading it was basically the fact that I knew she wasn't his only wife. It said so on the front of the book, so I wanted to know what happened to her. At one point their baby gets sick and I thought, "Oh-here it comes, she will contract it and die and this is where the drama lies...." But no.
The one area that the author really excels at is getting her facts right. And really making it feel like you're in the middle of that era-like Zelda Fitgerald could be living just over the hill from you and you can almost see the smoke in the air. She does a great job of representing the time period and naming names, movements that defined the era with accuracy.
I'd say, if nothing else, it's intriguing. Are you going to live if you don't read it-yes. Was it a waste of my time to read it, hmmmm, no. I've read better but it was a nice escape and maybe more educational that just pure drama and fiction. 

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