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The French Girl

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  222 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
The heartwarming story of a young French girl raised in a world of prejudice and despair, who becomes orphaned and is sent to live with her distant cousin and her cousin's partner. Embraced by their love and warmly welcomed by their community of lesbian friends, she slowly discovers the true meaning of family -- until the state decides to take her away (from the author's ...more
Paperback, 196 pages
Published February 7th 2012 by CreateSpace (first published December 31st 2011)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jan 26, 2012 Lori rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review, guest-post, kindle
In the tiny town of Cote Nouveau, Massachusetts, Etoile, and her older sister, Anais, live a rough life with their mother, a woman who prefers the bottle to her own children. Their father, a fisherman, was lost at sea years ago. They make do with what they have and watch out for each other. Especially when word spreads that the county lady is making her rounds. Then a tragic accident occurs, and the girls are forced to live apart as Anais is not old enough to take care of Etoile on her own. ...more
Julie Smith (Knitting and Sundries)
This review first appeared on my blog:

First sentence: Papa used to always say that the wind carried with it either secrets or souls and if you watched very carefully, you could tell which one it was.

Originally published as a Kindle-only novel, and recently released in paperback, The French Girl is a story of an eleven-year-old girl named Etoile living in the fishing town of Cote Nouveau, MA in the 1970's.

With the death of Etoile's father during a storm fi
Jul 05, 2015 YC rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: all-time-favs
Such a lovely book. I couldn't put it down. Such a lovely lovely lovely story. So much warmth, so much love.
Oct 06, 2012 Nicki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I almost didn't read The french Girl. I downloaded it when it was free, but for some reason I imagined that it was going to be dull and dry. I pictured it possibly being a book that was translated from French and might be hard to follow. Because the cover art and title were vague, I even thought it might be a poorly written self-published book. However, the other day I decided to give it a try. And I was pleasantly surprised! Not only was the writing beautiful, but the story and characters were ...more
So this was just lovely to read :) I found it a little slow to get into at first, but in the end I have to give it five not four stars because once Etoile was living with Jean and Giselle, it picked up so much and was just amazing. So lovely to read and picture. I loved the three main characters so much - Etoile is just adorable, and Jean and Giselle were such a lovely couple!

I found the setting a little confusing at first though. The small village of Côte Nouveau is so very French and I did jus
Oct 08, 2012 Judy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my first book to download to my new kindle. I am excited to read it but I may save it to read in the car on the way to Wisconsin next month. Well! I started it and could not put it down.. I read it all. Kinda wish I would have saved it for our trip as it would have passed by quickly. This is one of my favorite books I have ever read. The author made me feel like I was watching everyone. I could see them clearly and descriptions of food made me hungry. haha.. Love it.. and speaking of ...more
Feb 28, 2012 Frances rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, favorites
One of the best books I have read on what qualifies a couple to raise a child. This book will grab you from the moment you meet Etoile. I know because I opened it intending to skim a couple of pages and ended up reading it straight through. Well written story with characters you will love. I highly recommend this book to anyone who works with foster care and adoption. I also believe this book would make an awesome book club choice. With the topic being same sex couples as parents I am sure this ...more
Jul 10, 2012 Patricia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel, kindle

When 11 year old Etoile suddenly becomes an orphan the state sends her to live with a cousin she has never met. This is a heart warming story about a young girl who blossoms under the loving care of and her cousin and her partner. She encounters intolerance/prejudice from several classmates, other adults, and even her older sister. I won't say more because I don't want to spoil the ending.

This is set in New Hampshire in the late 1970s-- much has changed but much still needs to change.

Sex and vio
Donna Vallee
I thought the story was interesting. I liked it. I only gave it three stars because the "voice" of Etoile bothered me. For an eleven/twelve her English seemed so correct and proper. Then when the sister, Anais, wrote her letters, if she wrote something in French, the English word was after. I think it's great that we come along way since the seventies as far as gay couples adopting and raising children!
May 21, 2013 Donna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ms. Donovan has written a charming book, in fact one of my favorites of the month. I love how she used the child's voice of an eleven year old girl, and the time frame of the fifties. So different than today's society.
This author did a lovely job of character development, made you question what a family really is.
I highly recommend The French Girl.
Karen Monahan
Mar 29, 2013 Karen Monahan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this book was going to be boring and it was anything but. I loved the characters, the dialogue and everything else. I found myself checking how many pages I had left because I didn't want it to end! An appropriate read at this time in history but a great read anytime. I'm so glad I downloaded it and have already lent it through kindle to my sister because it's a must-read.
Jul 07, 2012 Gina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A quick and enjoyable read. At times, the lines about "real French women" seemed a bit forced, but otherwise, I greatly enjoyed the writing.
Mar 01, 2012 Jamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very enjoyable, quick read! It flowed well, and I found myself getting lost in the story. I would definitely recommend!
Mar 15, 2012 Klanderson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very thoughtful story about tragedy in one family and love in another. I enjoyed this read!
May 23, 2012 Shirley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very good book. Easy read but very sweet. Tackles some political issues during the 70's.
R.E. Conary
May 19, 2015 R.E. Conary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Storybook Tale of Love and Family

I originally wrote this review in 2012. This year the author republished the novel and set it in the 1990s instead of the 1970s allowing for more accuracy to the story's ending. I'm glad she did. It's a wonderful book.

I thoroughly enjoyed THE FRENCH GIRL although it was not my usual read. The last book I read with a child narrator was THE LOVELY BONES, and of late I've read mostly dark noir authors like Sam Millar, Ken Bruen and David Peace. When THE FRENCH GIRL
Andrea Buschman
Apr 01, 2015 Andrea Buschman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful story

What makes a family? That is the question interpreted in this story. Etoile is a little girl who is living in a small village with her mother and sister and when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is sent to live with a cousin and her partner in another state. Giselle and Jean welcome Etoile and the three of them are doing fine together but the state tries to decide otherwise. With the descriptions of the cottage, and the wonderful meals, I was ready to be adopted
Nov 27, 2015 Kary rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked the story but I think it was confusing as to what time period it was being written for. Seemed a lot of the story messed more with a 1960 time era that what it was. I think I read that she updated story line to go with news of the day but sometimes I don't think it works. Still a very good story,
Howard Katzoff
Sep 09, 2014 Howard Katzoff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent story

This is one incredible story so don't start it before bedtime. It's absorbing, cliff hanging and thrilling. What a terrific story line. No way can you guess the ending. Read it- you'll be happy you did!
Chrisann Williams
I couldn't wait to read what would happen next. So many life lessons in these pages. Seeing the world through Etoile's eyes and seeing unconditional love from Giselle and Jean, gives great hope to the reader. I absolutely loved this story,
Apr 12, 2015 Sgogirl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent. Not a typical novel

Nice change of pace. This is a book that defines what love and what family is all about no matter the make-up of the family. A recommended read. I found a few typographical errors but that did not take away from the book.
Apr 10, 2015 Michelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book

I highly recommend this book. It is well written, insightful and has the kind of flow you can get lost in. Well worth the time and price.
The heartwarming story of a young French girl, Etoile, raised in a world of prejudice and despair, who becomes orphaned and is sent to live with her distant cousin and her cousin's partner.
Hammed Ajiboye
Apr 23, 2015 Hammed Ajiboye rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thrilling Read

I love the intrigues and drama at the end. While I do not approve of same sex relations,I feel it is best to raise children in an atmosphere of love
Jo rated it liked it
May 16, 2015
Shirley Savarese
Shirley Savarese rated it it was amazing
Jan 16, 2015
Morgan rated it it was amazing
Feb 06, 2012
Diane rated it really liked it
Apr 18, 2015
Carol Lozier
Carol Lozier rated it it was amazing
Apr 05, 2012
Judyg951 rated it really liked it
Mar 19, 2013
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Ask the Author 1 3 Apr 02, 2013 08:56AM  
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Author of THE HUMMINGBIRD WOMEN'S SOCIETY series (including THE FRENCH GIRL), THE BLACK WIDOW AGENCY series of comedy-mysteries featuring the raucously funny gals of The Black Widow Investigative Agency; and several other books.

Felicia Donovan has been telling stories since she was a young girl (apologies to my siblings for some of them). She has worked in journalism, education, and law enforcemen
More about Felicia Donovan...

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