Laura’s Book Nook- “The Little Paris Bookshop” by Nina George

Dripping with French culture and that pink frosting Parisian feel, “The Little Paris Bookshop” by Nina George is a story for anyone who craves realistic adventure close to home. The lead in the story, Monsieur Jean Perdu, calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life.

As an avid reader, I finished this 400-page gem in a matter of days, though I suppose if I were to read it again, I would take it much more slowly. The author clearly intended this book to be savored, not inhaled. In the story, Jean Perdu’s great love left him, leaving only a letter in her wake, which Jean refuses to read for over 20 years. After being numb for so long and finally reading the letter, his world comes crashing down. After his emotional break-down, almost the entire book takes place on his bookstore/boat while he journeys through France to find forgiveness and to make peace with his loss.

Joined by a suddenly bestselling young author and a worn and quiet Italian chef, Perdu travels with practically no money in his pockets, dispensing his wisdom and his books as payment and gifts wherever he goes.

And at the end of the book, past the epilogue, Nina George gifts all her readers with book prescriptions if you’re feeling certain ways and the side effects that go with them. She also leaves you with all the recipes used in the book, so that you may taste the flavors of France just as Jean Perdu did.

She shows us through her pages that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself. And that everything, in the end, will be all right. Perfect for when you need a real life story with a real life, but happy, ending: I would give The Little Paris Bookshop a 4/5.