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The Paris Secret

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3.78  ·  Rating details ·  5,647 ratings  ·  487 reviews
Not every door should be opened...

With stunning locations and page-turning tension, The Paris Secret is an intense and gripping tale from bestselling author Karen Swan.

Somewhere along the cobbled streets of Paris, an apartment lies thick with dust and secrets: full of priceless artworks hidden away for decades.

High-flying fine art agent Flora from London, more comfortable
...more
Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Published July 14th 2016 by Pan
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Ruth I'm pretty sure it's the ex-friend who edits Vogue (or whichever posh magazine it was). She's getting him to investigate the French racing driver in…moreI'm pretty sure it's the ex-friend who edits Vogue (or whichever posh magazine it was). She's getting him to investigate the French racing driver in order to expose him. (less)
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Community Reviews

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3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,647 ratings  ·  487 reviews


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Cindy Burnett
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

This is the third book I have read that is inspired by an abandoned apartment in Paris that was discovered several years ago. The owner fled Paris during World War 2 and never returned. Each book has been fascinating to read (the other two are The Paris Apartment by Michelle Gable and The Velvet Hours by Alyson Richman), and I love that each book is dramatically different from the others. Karen Swan tells a fascinating and compelling tale with the world of fine art as a background. The
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Aditi
“Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.”

----Pablo Picasso


Karen Swan, an English author, pens a heart-touching and intense contemporary romance novel, The Paris Secret which unfolds the story of a family as well as a powerful female art dealer who gets muddled into the family drama as well as the family secrets of a reputed and affluent French family suddenly discovered artworks are needed to be studied by the art dealer to find its origin as well as the reason behind its concea
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Irena
Jul 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
3,5 stars to be precise.

I have a confession to make: I never understood the art.
You can put me infront of the most phrased art work in the world, and I will just stand there, totally confused, forcing my brain cells to see the beauty everyone talks about.
I was never good at art class. I hated it. As an outcome to that, I didn’t particularly enjoy learning about it either.
Therefore, when it comes to art culture, telling you that I am bad would probably be understate.

Main theme of this book is the
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Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

An apartment hidden for 73 years and forbidden by the owner to be known to anyone, but why?

The children didn't even know about it until the apartment was broken into.

Once the apartment was revealed to the children, in comes Flora and Angus, well-known art dealers and auctioneers. And what a find in that apartment closed for 73 years...famous paintings, artifacts, and the home left as it had been when the family lived there.

Flora was in her domain and in her glory over this, but some things didn
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Zoe
Apr 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Compelling, emotional and deliciously mysterious!

This is a riveting tale that sweeps us into the glamorous world of art and takes us on a journey to find the true provenance of precious paintings that have been concealed for decades.

The story is predominantly set in Paris during both the latter part of WWII, as well as present day and is filled with mystique, familial drama, heartbreak, secrets, deception, history, abuse, self discovery, exotic locales and of course a little bit of romance.

The p
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Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
THE PARIS SECRET is such a fabulous book. From the start, the story engrossed me as Flora, a fine art agent from London, arrived in Paris together with her boss to visit an apartment that has been locked since World War II. What secrets does the apartment have? Why has the apartment been locked and forgotten for so long time? But as Flora begins investigating the history of the paintings that are found in the apartment, she realizes maybe the apartment was left that way for a reason.

READ THE RES
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DJ Sakata
My Rating:

4.5

Favorite Quotes:

She could feel the lives that had once pulsed here, the social gaiety that must have been enjoyed in this very room before the horrors of war and then the enduring silence afterwards.

The neglected apartment reclaimed at long last. The past was stirring and shaking off the dust. The neighbours would soon know, then the city, until finally, when the sale was announced, the entire world. After seventy-three years of silence, the secret was finally slipping out.

He ran hi
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Jeanette
May 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-readers
Absolutely thrilled when I won this book in the Goodreads First Reads giveaway.

This is the third book that I have read by Karen Swan that I have read. Up until earlier this year, I had never read any of her books, but that all changed when I found two in a local charity shop. I enjoyed reading this book as much as I did her previous two (Christmas in the Snow and The Summer Without You). I very rarely write what a story is about for fear of spoiling for others, but I do highly recommend.
MaryBeth's Bookshelf
When "urban explorers" (people who enter places they are not allowed) find an apartment in Paris that has laid empty since WWII secrets are exposed and a family worst nightmare is realized.

Flora Sykes works for an art agency and is called in to assess the hundred of pieces of art, sculpture, and objects found in an abandoned Paris apartment. We come to find out that the apartment is owned by the rich and high powered Vermeil family. As secrets begin to unfold, a family is torn apart, and a part
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Ariel
An apartment in Paris that has been sealed since WWII is finally opened and it contains a glittering array of priceless art works. Even more mysteriously another apartment is found owned by the same family. It contains one piece of art and it's very existence is a closely guarded secret. Flora Sykes a young and attractive art expert is hired by the family to bring the paintings to auction. Complicating the matter is the fact that a large amount of undiscovered random paintings found in an apartm ...more
Tracy Shephard
Jul 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful and beautiful tale. I just adored this novel.

I love all things French and when the doors of Apartment number 8 were opened for me I just got lost in the dust, the beauty and the art. Along with Flora and Angus, I became engrossed in the Renoirs and the other priceless artifacts that have been lain untouched for 70 years. I also have to admit that I Googled like mad at every piece that was described and not only did I enjoy the ride, I also learned quite a bit too.

Karen Swan is a
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Elizabeth
Mar 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: wwii, war
World War II, nazis, intrigue, secrets, romance, fine art, a stolen baby, a locked room—what a story! Too bad I didn’t like it.

Don’t get me wrong—it’s not bad. In fact, It’s pretty solid in many respects. But despite the amazing content, I thought it was boring. I know that’s only my opinion, and other people loved it (and I’m glad they did), but I thought the first half, at least, was really, really boring. I wouldn’t have finished it if it hadn’t been a book club read, and even then, it was a
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Tara
Oct 20, 2017 rated it did not like it
I'll tell you what The Paris Secret is. The Paris Secret is... IT SUCKS! No, really though, continue to read for my original view as to why ~

This book brings to mind a quote by Eleanor Roosevelt ~ "Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people." After reading The Paris Secret by Karen Swan, I'd have to add the addendum "trite minds discuss labels". I realized that Ms. Swan is a former fashion editor and that her world then consisted of knowing different desi
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Samantha
Oct 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Well written with good atmospheric passages which transport the reader into the heart of Paris, Vienna, Antibes and London.

After a property has been broken into in Paris a long-forgotten apartment is discovered that contains priceless artworks dating back to Vichy France. The building is owned by the Vermeil family who had no idea of the apartments existence until they are informed that the building has been broken into. Madame Vermeil is anxious to know what is in the apartment.

We are introduc
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Marla
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. It probably could have been a lot bigger if there was more details thrown in but I thought the pacing was really good. I always like to learn things about what went on during WWII and now people survived. I also love Paris so I enjoyed the international feel. I didn't even care that there wasn't much substance to Flora and Xavier's relationship but it made sense with the reaction they had to each other. Sometimes it happens very quickly. The side story about Flora's b ...more
Jennifer
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I judged this book entirely by its title. I have a weakness for all things French, and I love books set in France.

I loved the concept of a secret apartment that hadn't been entered in 75 years. What mysteries would it hold? How would they matter today?

The Paris Secret was inspired by the true story of a Paris apartment that remained untouched and unknown for 70 years. It was rediscovered in 2013 full of art and artifacts frozen in time.

This was the perfect novel to escape with for an afternoon w
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Tracey
a wonderful read. I remember when they found all the art in the apartment in Paris a few years ago.
to create this wonderful novel out of this story , is sheer inspiration.
I really liked all the characters , even natascha. In places I was close to tears at the story told and the imagination of such past events.
the description of the art has been a pleasure to read too.
if you like art , you like history then pick up this book and read it.
I read it in one sitting and it's a Favourite this year
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Deb
The Paris Secret is the second book about, or based on the discovery and opening up of the real abandoned Paris apartment which had sat untouched for 70 years after the owner fled at the outbreak of World War II. (My review for that book The Paris Time Capsule is here.) I find the subject so intriguing, the description of the book sounded different enough from the other and I was curious to see what this author would do with the inspiration and I was not disappointed. Karen Swan puts the emphasi ...more
Kiersten
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cori
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways
This book had everything I enjoy in a book, strong female character, art, descriptions of life in Europe, a love interest, and a mystery. I couldn't wait to read this book each evening!! This was a Goodreads giveaway that I won and am so glad I found this book! It really was the perfect match for me!
Shilpa
May 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Art. Mystery. Romance.

Everything you expected from Paris, and more.

Beautiful marketing by the team @PGCBooks

Despite the title, The Paris Secret is not wholly set in The City of Light. Rather, Karen Swan's latest novel spans Paris, Vienna, Antibes, and London, and takes you on an adventure that uncovers both hidden pasts, and secrets of epic proportions.

Down a Paris cobbled street, a long-forgotten dust cloaked apartment is found. But there is more to the story; there is a secret -- the apartm
...more
Maii
Dec 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Why didnt I know about this book before?
I was just walking down the street and thought I would go in and see if there were any good books to maybe read (as one does) and there it was. There were two copies and I like all books that have ‘Paris’ in the title so I picked it up and read the back cover. I was hooked!
It had romance, a mystery, art and history. I had nothing against the plot and I’m usually very picky about these books.

I just finished the book and I’m still high on the ending.
First o
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Allie
Feb 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Goodreads for this first reads giveaway.

My first book by this author, it was an easy, entertaining read, the tale starts when a discovery is made in an apartment which has been locked up for over seventy years and when opened reveals numerous pieces of art painted by some of the worlds most famous artists. Based on a true story of a flat in Paris that had been left undisturbed since the end of World War Two.

The story follows Flora who has been employed to catalogue the collection a
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Susu
Jul 18, 2016 rated it liked it
Art theft during the Nazi occupation of France, mixed in with a modern day love story with a few strange twists and turns - entertaining popcorn read v
booksofallkinds
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THE PARIS SECRET by Karen Swan is a stunning story centred around the art world that blends past and present together with such exquisite prose that it actually takes your breath away.

Flora is a talented Fine Art Agent and spends most of her life working hard, flying from one country to another. So when she gets an excited call from her boss telling her to make her way to Paris immediately, Flora knows that there must be something special waiting there, and she isn't wrong. An extremely wealthy
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Mayda
Feb 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
Flora is an art expert, buying art for clients, evaluating pieces, and researching the authenticity of ownership of artwork. When many pictures are discovered in an abandoned apartment, she is tasked with tracing their path of ownership for the family who now owns them. But as she goes down that path, Flora soon discovers how twisted it is, and plagued with secrets. Meanwhile, her own family is dealing with a secret of their own. The first part of book is somewhat slow moving, and though the aut ...more
Tami
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Flora Sykes, the daughter of a chief auctioneer at Christie’s, grew up in the world of fine art and began a glamorous career as a fine art agent. When a long forgotten apartment belonging to a wealthy client is discovered, Flora is sent to Paris to work on assessing the value of the artwork found in the apartment.

As Flora gets deeper into the job, she uncovers deeply hidden family secrets, World War II intrigue and embarks on her own passionate romance. This is a novel that will satisfy mystery,
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Danni
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was better than I expected - I took it out on a whim from my library because I was running out of time to look and was really pleasantly surprised, and I finished it in a few days which is always the sign of a good book! Every once in a while I'm in the mood for something simple but generally find your typical contemporary romance too easy a read, which is where I think the Paris Secret differs. This book has great substance, interesting characters, and a subplot that I couldn't predict wit ...more
Maddie
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was ok
If you took out the entirely useless side plots of her brother and her love life, maybe this would have been okay. The editor needed to do a better job. Flora has this high-flying job, yet her and her boss can't afford a data plan and they're always waiting for a wifi connection? Or Ines has a professional skateboarder for a boyfriend, and her favourite "trick" is to ride goofy foot?

The book comes so close to addressing interesting questions and situations, like fortunes made from buying and sel
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Jess
I ended up with sort of mixed feelings about this. On the one hand I found it very readable and the romance in it was the sort of tortured one I can really respond to. On the other, it deals with extremely serious historical events and they sort of felt used for plot twists? And that leaves aside that there is a false rape charge in the book, which this really felt not the moment for.
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Karen Swan began her career in fashion journalism before giving it all up to raise her three children and a puppy, and to pursue her ambition of becoming a writer. She lives in the forest in Sussex, writing her books in a treehouse overlooking the Downs. Her books include Christmas at Tiffany's, Summer at Tiffany's, The Perfect Present, Christmas in the Snow, The Summer Without You, The Paris Secr ...more