Books about books, libraries, or bookstores always interest me, so I just had to read The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George.
The story starts out in Paris. Jean Perdu runs a bookstore on a converted barge on the Seine. He calls himself a literary apothecary because he can tell, after asking a few questions, just the book that a person needs at that point in their life. Unfortunately, he can not do the same for himself. We learn that he had a great love, Manon, who suddenly left him one day. She left a note, but fearing what it would say he never read it and then shut himself off from any other relationship.
One day, a new woman moves into his apartment building. Her husband decided he needed a newer model, so she is bereft. The landlady asks M. Perdu to loan Catherine some furniture. In order to do so, he must open up the room he'd blocked off when Manon left. He gives a table to Catherine, but has to leave it outside her door. He eventually meets her and they hit it off. Catherine finds the letter that Manon left (she doesn't read it) and gives it to M. Perdu. He finally reads it and discovers it is not at all what he thought.
While on his boat/store shortly afterwards he decides to set sail to the south of France. A moody first novelist, who is working on a second book after a huge hit with the first, joins him. Together they take a journey of discovery.
I liked this book because they story was told slowly and gently. The characters were very interesting and you get to care about them. Sometimes the word choice was a bit odd, but it was translated from German, so it may be a translation issue. I would recommend this to people who like character driven books, books set in France, or books about personal discovery.
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