Return to Paris: A Memoir
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Return to Paris: A Memoir

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  109 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Paris, 1947: Colette Rossant returns to Paris after waiting out World War II in Cairo among her father's Egyptian-Jewish relatives. Initially, the City of Light seems gray and forbidding to the teenage Colette, especially after her thrill-seeking mother leaves her in the care of her bitter, malaisé grandmother. Yet Paris will prove the place where Colette awakens...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published April 20th 2004 by Washington Square Press (first published March 18th 2003)
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May 30, 2007 Catherine rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Francophiles
I've really enjoyed reading all three of this author's memoirs. This is the second in the series. I particularly enjoyed reading about her perspective of Americans from her French sensibilities. If there's a fourth book I'll race out to get that one too!
Colette Rossant was born in Paris. During the war years, she was sent to relatives in Egypt. Eight years later, she returns to Paris as a teenager. This book is the story of her time in Paris while she is finishing school, living with a very domineering, at times abusive grandmother until the time of her marriage in her early 20s. Ms. Rossant's greatest confidantes in her life are the cook at her Egyptian grandparents house and then later, the cook at her French grandmother's house. Therefore, s...more
RETURN TO PARIS by Colette Rossant

Who does not like books about food, and French food at that. No pictures in this one, but such vivid descriptions and such love of the food that we don't really need pictures.

Colette Rossant is of French and Egyptian descent. Now in her late 70s, she lives in America with her American architect husband James, whom she first met when she was 16. Just like any love story, they immediately fell in love and were finally reunited four long years later.

Colette's mot...more
Colette Rossant's second memoir and the follow up to the wonderful Apricots on the Nile - again filled with memories and stories from her past and interspersed with mouth-watering recipes along the way.

In 1947 Colette returned to live in Paris after spending the years of World War II with her relatives in Cairo. Again, Colette's feckless mother leaves her in the care of fairly unknown relatives, this time her stern maternal grandmother. Luckily the chef of the house - Mademioselle Georgette take...more
This was a nice book but not brilliant. Her story is interesting -- she is partly Jewish, partly Catholic (her mother converted to Catholicism and pressured her to convert too), of a French mother and Egyptian father, spending a good hunk of her childhood in Cairo -- and I love that she is so interested in food. But her writing is stilted, it doesn't flow, and the editing could have been better. Still, I enjoyed it overall and took special note of the fact that here was one person who, for good...more
Rossant keeps her focus tightly on her day to day experience as an Egyptian French Jewish convent educated teenager rejoining her family in Paris after WW2 and negotiating a complicated identity. The recipes and meals are vivid and the reader gets to know the hungers and moods of the teenage narrator through what she eats. I was left hungering for a bigger perspective and context for this story.
I guess it was the cover photo, a classic Parisian cafe in black and white photography that got me, that along with the title, I'm definately a dreamer here.
Didn't keep me turning the page, but still good, just not the of these types of books.
Oh, as always, little bits of food bytes, recipies, that make it fun.
Guinevere Johansson
Jul 09, 2008 Guinevere Johansson rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who is interested in Paris and/or great food.
I felt that this book was hurried; but about 1/2 way through I started to gain more of an interest. The novel is cut with some great recipes throughout - so if you're into French, Egyptian or Italian cuisine, you'll appreciate the recipes.
I thought I was buying a book by Collette the French writer and discovered this book. I actually enjoyed it very much and knew nothing of this author!
Miranda Pomme
Boek in één ruk uitgelezen. Het is zeer levendig geschreven, je waant je op de plekken en je kan de gerechten bijna proeven.
Toni Matteson
Never has a book reminded me so much of being in Paris than this one. It is like you are really there!
Food, love, history, and travel....perfect combination.
very sweet, charming book which goes quickly
I love stories with recipes.
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Colette S. Palacci Rossant was born in Paris but spent most of her childhood in a mansion in the Garden City district of Cairo, Egypt, raised by her paternal grandparents and a host of aunts and cousins -- all of whom excelled in the kitchen. Her closest childhood friend was Ahmet, the house cook.

At the age of 15 she returned to Paris to finish her studies and lived with her maternal grandparents....more
More about Colette Rossant...
Apricots on the Nile: A Memoir with Recipes The World in My Kitchen: The Adventures of a (Mostly) French Woman in America Madeleines In Manhattan: A Memoir With Recipes Vegetables Colette's Slim Cuisine

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