Sensual and seductive, Paris Was the Place pulls you in and doesn t let you go Find your nearest chair and start reading With her poet s eye, Conley has woven a vivid, masterful tale of love and its costs Lily King, author of Father of the Rain When Willie Pears begins teaching at a center for immigrant girls who are all hoping for French asylum, she has no idea it w Sensual and seductive, Paris Was the Place pulls you in and doesn t let you go Find your nearest chair and start reading With her poet s eye, Conley has woven a vivid, masterful tale of love and its costs Lily King, author of Father of the Rain When Willie Pears begins teaching at a center for immigrant girls who are all hoping for French asylum, she has no idea it will change her life As she learns their stories, the lines between teaching and mothering quickly begin to blur Willie has fled to Paris to create a new family for herself by reaching out to her beloved brother, Luke, and her straight talking friend, Sara She soon falls for Macon, a charming, passionate French lawyer, and her new family circle seems complete But Gita, a young girl at the detention center, is determined to escape her circumstances, no matter the cost And just as Willie is faced with a decision that could have potentially dire consequences for both her relationship with Macon and the future of the center, Luke is taken with a serious, as yet unnamed illness, forcing Willie to reconcile with her father and examine the lengths we will go to for the people we care the most about.In Paris Was the Place, Conley has given us a beautiful portrait of on how much it matters to belong to a family, to a country, to any one place, and how this belonging can mean the difference in our survival This is a profoundly moving portrait of some of th
Paris Was the Place Sensual and seductive Paris Was the Place pulls you in and doesn t let you go Find your nearest chair and start reading With her poet s eye Conley has woven a vivid masterful tale of love and its c
I won this book in a Firstreads giveaway.Willow Pears lives in Paris, teaching poetry, and volunteering at a center off the Rue De la Metz for girls that are seeking asylum from immigration laws trying to send them back to their home countries At the center, Willie, befriends the girls from all over the world and becomes attached to one in particular, Gita from India She also falls in love with Macon, the lawyer fighting for these girls asylum in France Willie is still having a tough time dealin [...]
This is the type of book that reminds me why I love to read I m completely caught up in a different world than my own The setting is Paris, which I love, and I can see the city as the characters describe it The main character is a young American poetry teacher who teaches in a French academy Her brother and his boyfriend also live in Paris Her best friend and her husband live there as well Willie, short for Willow, is asked to teach a poetry class in a detainment center where teenage girls from [...]
Paris Was the Place is an interesting read I didn t think it was a bad book In fact, there were some parts of it that I quite liked Unfortunately, the book as a whole didn t mesh well with me Most of my issues stem from the fact that it felt very unfocused We have the story of Willow teaching poetry to immigrants seeking asylum Willow s relationship with her brother, and flash backs of her family A romantic storyline with a lawyer A trip to India Etc Unfortunately, none of these storylines reall [...]
I LOVE Paris but I struggled to connect with this story At the beginning, I was sucked into the section about the main character s work with the immigrants at the detention centre It was so promising I expected so much with regards to the girls seeking asylum in France and the main character s relationship with these girls That s what I was really looking forward to Then the story line about the main character s brother takes over You get the impression that this is a case of two short stories [...]
Full disclosure I received a free copy of this book as part of the Vine program.Historical novels that take place during one s adult life are a different reading experience than books set in the distant past When I read a book set in the Napoleonic era, I m not mentally arguing with the author about the realities of the time.Paris Was The Place is the story of Willie, which is short for Willow Anachronism 1 hippie babies were being born in the 80s, not 30 years old Willow Not so much Willie is a [...]
I received an advanced copy from Elle magazine for review.This is a perfect summer read From Paris to India, from love to friendship, this novel covers Paris is a character itself in this novel The description of the streets, the sights, and the people were so well written, I felt as if I was walking through Paris myself And then the novel takes a detour to India, and again I felt I had been to this country that I have never been to before The novel transports you to these places, and also trans [...]
Sentimental, heartfelt, eloquently visual, this book draws you into Paris in a realistic and captivating way The narrator is distinctly human, flawed but trying, good intentioned and young Her job to help her students unfolds in an emotional story about generosity, family, loneliness, and so much As a romance and coming of age story the plot is a definite success for me It contains many touching and tender moments, and while it is tragic it is also hopeful This book captures what it s like to l [...]
Disappointing, I was interested in the plight of young refugee girls, about to be deported from Paris, but I found the leading character torn in too many directions to fully engage in any one of the themes in the book the loss of her mother, the isolation from her father, her first real love affair, her brother s illness, her friend s new baby, the poems of an Indian woman, a quick trip to India, and the plight of the refugees Scattered
Susan Conley is a very talented writer I love reading about Paris Books that take place in Paris are right up my alley This was not the usual Not only did Conley manage to bring Paris to life like never before, she also gave me a view of India that I might never have experienced without having read this novel Although some of the content is sad and deals with dire illness, I have ended up with a very good impression Not for the faint of heart, but do take this one in.
This book was so bad I could only barely and with a lot of eye rolling and wondering what the heck she is even talking about read 20 pages and then had to immediately return it to the library.
I had a bit of an up and down reaction to this book Told in the first person, this perhaps was my largest difficulty I will admit to being harsh about first person narrative, there is a fine line between moving a story forward with a character s voice and bringing the forward motion to a complete halt with inclusions of all the ephemera that we normally wouldn t share with our friends during the day Here often was a problem as descriptions of numerous Metro journeys, that weren t used to explain [...]
I spent the first quarter really annoyed with the book and annoyed with the main character but I also couldn t put it down I feel like I finished it out of a sense of frustration than anything I was really interested in the story of the asylum seekers than anything However, they are just a plot device to give this otherwise stock character filled novel something interesting None of the other story lines or characters were special or unique or particularly new BUT there is a reason why stock ch [...]
I liked this book But, I didn t like how it began Not the story part it just didn t grab me like a good book out of the gates grabs you So I went several days without wanting to read it It did gather speed about midway through and then I wanted to see what was going to happen I believe that the reason for this was that I really didn t know where this story was going Who was the story about Was it about the girls that Willow was trying to help at the shelter Was it about Willow s brother It took [...]
I received this book from GoodReads First Reads Willie Pears begins teaching immigrant girls at a center for those seeking French asylum As she learns their stories and the legal procedures involved, Willie desperately hopes for the best, often glossing over continuous doses of shrewd advice from the French lawyer, Macon Grappling with her feelings toward Macon, her brother s failing health, and her determination to protect Gita, a young girl from the center, Willie is forced to examine the leng [...]
Willow Pears is an American teaching in Paris she spends her spare time helping girls in a refugee center prepare for their immigration hearings In the process, she finds herself falling in love with human rights attorney Macon Ventri but nothing about their story is romantic.From the painful stories of young women fleeing rape, sex trafficking and in their countries of origin not much has changed since the late 1980s, when this book is set , to the challenges of the earliest days of the AIDS c [...]
I ve spent the last week listening to Paris Was The Place while I walked these lovely fall afternoons along the ocean, and I wept, again and again I was captivated by the story while I chopped and stirred ratatouille I kept listening when I climbed under the covers these early chilly evenings I couldn t let go of the story The characters continue to live in me after the last lines I was in awe of your creating these characters that moved me to tears I was so touched by their depth, their interio [...]
Let me start out by saying that I am a huge Susan Conley fan and I look forward to reading her second novel Her first book, a memoir, is on my Favorites shelf and I had the foremost good fortune of meeting her in Portsmouth Her first novel has a lot going for it First of all, it is set in Paris, a magical city I know fairly well and love The characters are interesting and she succeds in pulling you into their lives and making you care about them There are snatches of fabulous writing that leave [...]
Overall, I enjoyed Paris was the Place, but I did feel that after being engaged in the story of Willow s work with immigrant girls, their different stories, her attachment to one of the girls and her love for Macon, the lawyer trying to help the girls stay in Paris for half of the book, I was suddenly drawn in to a different story Willow s gay brother, Luke, is an important part of her life in Paris and her relationship with him and his partner help fill in the backstory of her life before Paris [...]
I did not care for this book at all The word disjointed came to mind several times as I was reading This book could not decide what it wanted to be about, and as a result it never became a cohesive, clear story I liked the premise, about a teacher in Paris who is hired to teach poetry to foreign girls in a home who are petitioning for asylum These girls have no family and have suffered serious hardships in their lives, so I thought the book would mostly focus on them and their journeys However, [...]
A deeply satisfying read that takes you to Paris, to the romantic beaches of France and the grubby backstreets, into hospitals and a refugee detention center It takes you deeply into a woman s heart and on a journey as that heart gets tested and pulled through pain and bliss I loved reading this book The characters followed me as I walked about my life It made me question the stories hiding behind the faces that passed me on the street It made me want to look closely It made me feel connected [...]
While like most expats trying to escape themselves and their lives, Willow goes to Paris where the greats like Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Stein also went to find a new, meaningful life But I was pleasantly surprised by the sensitivity and selflessness of the main character Willow when she loves and cares for her friends, her students, and her family While the story is heartbreaking when her brother loses his battle with AIDS, it is redemptive in how people with differences come together to supp [...]
I m still thinking so much about Willie and Macon, and Luke, long after I finished this book Usually books set in Paris make the city a huge presence, impressing us with its beauty and romance but here Susan Conley has made Paris a very realistic place Refugees live there, people become ill, hearts are broken all taking place along the amazing picturesqueness of the city Looking forward to reading the author s previous book now
This was a good story and well written I did figure out what was wrong with the brother very early on but that predictability didn t hurt the story, in fact it just helped remind me what things were like with disease in the 80 s I do wish allowed 1 2 stars I had a hard time deciding between 3 and 4 but in the end I choose 3 because I felt like the nice pretty bow that it was wrapped up in the end was too predictable.
Disappointing I found the writing style to be very disjointed The writer would be in the middle of a thought then add in some random idea was hard to follow and the character development was very poor.
This is a gorgeous book And it s set in France and India What could you want for your perfect summer novel
I didn t finish it, I gave up Not what I expected.
Can t finish it Boring
I enjoyed listening to the audiobook I was drawn into the story by the narrator, the language and the story line Midway through the book, the main story line shifted It was emotional and well done I just don t like stories or shows about medical dying issues I stayed with it though and I m glad I did.
This read like a biography It felt so real, I had to check to see that it was fiction Susan Conley does a great job describing situations and feelings I felt like I was there with my heart breaking with the girls in the center, traveling through India, as well as with everything she feels for her family.
Willie is an American living in Paris and teaching part time at a center for women seeking asylum in France While the scenes in Paris are vivid, and the stories of the women at the center are intriguing, Willie is written as a depressing character who never seems quite able to be happy It was a chore to read.