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Paris by the Book

3.17  ·  Rating details ·  3,624 ratings  ·  716 reviews
A missing person, a grieving family, a curious clue: a half-finished manuscript set in Paris. Heading off in search of its author, a mother and her daughters find themselves in France, rescuing a failing bookstore and drawing closer to unexpected truths.

Once a week, I chase men who are not my husband….

When eccentric novelist Robert Eady abruptly vanishes, he leaves behind
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published April 3rd 2018 by Dutton
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Average rating 3.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,624 ratings  ·  716 reviews

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Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
At some point in our lives, we have watched a show, attended a concert or read a book and ultimately said, "we'' there's an evening that I won't get back."
Expectation was high, but the reality of the experience was not even close. Disappointment, some feeling of disbelief, and a little anger of time wasted are the initial feelings. I will usually try and rationalize and reason it out and think about what maybe I missed or what the creators goal was but sometimes you have to accept reality that i
Spencer Orey
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cities
I guess I'm a sucker for anything about bookstores and Paris. Can I buy a bookstore and live in Paris too? There's a compelling story here about a disappeared writer father and how his family follows clues to Paris to search for him. I see that some other reviewers were disappointed by the ending, but I thought it fit the story just right.

There's a back and forth to the first part of the book, where the action flashes between Milwaukee family life before the writer's disappearance and then thei
Theresa Alan
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was ok
DNF When writer Robert Eady disappears, his wife, Leah, and daughters, Ellie and Daphne, don’t know if he’s alive or dead. I did want to find out the mystery of what happened to him, but unfortunately, the writing style made me not care enough to actually finish this book.

Leah’s narration is incredibly odd. She’ll skim over months and months. Events will abruptly happen. There is just no continuity in the narrative, and it bugged the heck out of me. Leah and her daughters go to Paris to find cl
Susanne  Strong
3 Stars.

Leah and Robert were College sweethearts, always wanting to go to Paris, France, settling for trips to Paris, Wisconsin, and other cities and towns named Paris thinking, maybe one day.

Robert is a writer - he craves time alone and often takes off, he and Leah and his kids, Ellie and Daphne, have an understanding. When Robert needs time, he just leaves, always leaving a note, saying “be back soon.” Sometimes he’s gone for hours, sometimes days, never providing an explanation. One morning,
Dorie  - Cats&Books :)
I really wanted to love this book, this writer is from my hometown and the Milwaukee bookshop he references is also close to me. I would classify this more as women’s fiction than anything else as the mystery is slow moving and is only part of the story.

Leah and Robert Eady had what started out as a good marriage with bright prospects for the future. They have two daughters, Daphne and Ellie, now young teens, and both parents are quite involved with the girls. Robert is a writer who had one best
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
3.5 stars.

This was a story of family. A broken family searching to piece itself back together.

One day Leah’s husband Robert, an eccentric novelist, vanishes. His absence leaves Leah and their two teenage daughters, Ellie and Daphne, alone and confused. In their search for Robert, mother and daughters, ‘temporarily’ move to Paris to continue exploring the possibilities of where he may be. Through hidden notes, hand written clues in books, a secret manuscript and mysterious ‘sightings’, the three
Carol (Bookaria)
Apr 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2018, netgalley
This is a novel is about coping with loss and taking a leap of faith by following a dream.

Leah is devastated after her husband's disappearance. Soon after, Leah takes her daughters for a visit to Paris and ends up staying and managing a bookstore.

The premise sounds wonderful but I did not enjoy this novel as much as I expected. The main character goes on and on about The Red Balloon movie (and the book) and also about the Madeline's children's stories. After extensively describing them she ret
Whispering Stories
Book Reviewed on

Paris by the Book starts so well. Liam Callanan is a gifted writer and even though the story was slow paced I didn’t care. I flew through the early chapters in the warm glow of the descriptions of their life as a young couple and then of Leah and the girls as they settled into life in Paris. Callanan has written in the first person from Leah’s perspective and he frequently uses a technique whereby we follow her thoughts for a paragraph or two set in the
Paris by the Book
Liam Callanan

MY RATING ⭐️⭐️⭐️▫️▫️
PUBLISHED April 3, 2018

A touching story of a family consumed by a mysterious disappearance that launches them on a literary journey in the City of Light.

They met outside a bookstore in Wisconsin! Leah, a former film student, whose favorite film was The Red Balloon by Albert Lamorisse and Robert, a struggling author, loved the Madeline books by Ludwig Bemelmans. The two continued to debate about which was better, even aft
Nikki (Saturday Nite Reader)
3.5 stars

Is Leah a widow? For almost a year, she is unsure. Her husband, Robert, vanishes and I don’t say suddenly, because it is like him to take a break from the family from time to time: this time, he doesn’t leave a note and does not return. Is he leaving her clues to his whereabouts? Conflicted with her emotions, Leah and her daughters, Ellie and Daphne, take a trip to Paris in hopes of finding their father; if he is still alive.

The book does have a slow start, but I felt a need to discover
Apr 10, 2018 rated it did not like it
The story could have been condensed by half, because halfway through I no longer cared whether the missing husband/father ever turned up.
Lauren McKeon Jenkins
Jul 08, 2018 rated it did not like it
Bailed. Really wanted to jump into this....a Paris....a romantic mystery...what’s not to like? However, the sentence structure is very chopped up and doesn’t flow. After several pages of having to re-read sentence after sentence because they were pointlessly convoluted.....I bailed. 😞
☆Dani☆ ☆Touch My Spine Book Reviews☆
I just loved this novel and the plot was fantastic! I loved it until I got to the ending and felt like I was hit by a truck because there was too many unanswered questions and I didn't like the way it ended at all but everything besides that was great. I really felt Robert and felt I could relate in quite a few ways. I thought the story had wonderful characters and the setting was gorgeous! I mean, a bookstore with an apartment above painted beautiful red(my favorite color) and in beautiful Pari ...more
Karen Mace
This should have been a book I adored! And from the blurb I thought I was going to be in for an incredible journey following a family who are beset by a disappearing husband, and their quest to trace him, whereever that may have been.

But for some reason I just found myself not connecting with the wife and daughters, as they moved to Paris where they opened up a bookshop and keep thinking that they spot the missing Robert, and is it him leaving messages in odd places? The story wasn't whimsical
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars. Boy, was I looking forward to this book. Especially with two of my favorite things in the title, Paris and book. The story line was intriguing as well. Robert is a struggling author who needs to take time away from his wife Leah and two daughters, frequently. When he vanishes for a significant time period, the ladies pack up and head to Paris. They find a bookstore, move in to the apartment above and start a new life. They search the city high and low for their father/husband. This s ...more
Sep 18, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didn-t-finish
The narrator's voice lacked authenticity - it read like a man writing a book trying to sound like a woman - and the writing was at times clunky and annoying. I totally concur with previous reviewers who said they came to this book expecting to be charmed but ended up very disappointed. As with so many of them, I am, obviously, a book lover, an also someone madly in love with Paris.

I'm glad there are readers here on Goodreads who loved this book, but, sadly, I'm not one of them and really don't
Mellie Antoinette
Apr 10, 2020 rated it did not like it
One of those rare moments when I’m mad I spent money on a book. This cornered the market in its pursuit of nothingness. We spend pages looking, but not looking, for the MC’s husband who up and left her family to move to Paris, which is somewhat infuriating - the MC spends more time on her missing husband than on the children he left.

Also, there is no bookish chatter despite the clever title, which now wreaks of money grab.
Jill Frederickson
Feb 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I found this book enchanting. It draws the reader in and keeps them off balance with the protagonist as she negotiates her new normal. It represents Paris through a variety of literary filters and adds its own spin. I enjoyed the settings, the characters and the way it did not take the easy way out.
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
3.5 Stars

I requested Paris by the Book from NetGalley initially because I liked the title and the cover. Then there was that opening line: “Once a week, I chase men who are not my husband...”

Liam Callanan’s novel is a charming yet mysterious story about Leah and Robert Eady. The couple have two daughters, Daphne and Ellie and the family appears to have a relatively happy life until Robert, a novelist, disappears. Leah finds a clue that leads her to Paris in search of Robert. The Eadys have their
Apr 04, 2018 rated it did not like it
I read this family drama/broken marriage thriller/book-for-book-lovers all nearly all the way through, hoping it would decide what kind of narrative it was so I could connect with it...but no luck.

There are moments of good writing, interesting plot lines, and promising character development, and then it lapses back into jumbled time tables, endless, repetitive descriptions of the narrator’s emotions, and cliff-hanger chapter endings that end up not that interesting.

This book is not what its cove
Apr 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
I was worried this was going to be a disappointment after reading a bunch of mediocre reviews, but it was great! I think a lot of people were probably expecting a lighter read from the description, but this is a really a book about grief, & imagination, & uncertainty, & love & loss. It's about the touchstones of our childhood & how they change as we change, about living as creative people in a world that rarely rewards or accommodates that, about making big sudden changes when you're stuck, & so ...more
Book Concierge
Digital audiobook read by Kim Bubbs

From the book jacket: When eccentric novelist Robert Eady abruptly vanishes, he leaves behind his wife, Leah, their daughters, and, hidden in an unexpected place, plane tickets to Paris. Hoping to uncover clues – and her husband – Leah sets off for France with her girls. [There] she discovers an unfinished manuscript Robert had been writing without her knowledge … and that he had set it in Paris. Mother and daughters follow the path of the manuscript to a small
Karen Ng
I'm a sucker for books about books and bookstores, This is why I bought this book at release. This book is a perfect example of how everyone thinks he could write ( read the author's self description), but not every book is good, or even passable.
Paris is an overrated city. Most Americans have this strange obssession about Paris, or London, or even Venice, without ever setting foot outside of the US. The author knows this. Having both the words "Paris", and "book" in the title is like a double c
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
**RATING 3.5**

Leah's relationship with her husband was never a conventional one but nothing about them was conventional - from the moment they met to the breaks away that Robert took regularly to help him with his writing. But as time passed and their children began to grow up, Leah felt like she was losing the man she had chosen to share her life and loves with, and then one day he simply disappears. From a code in a cereal box, tickets to Paris (a place that represents so much to them), to a h
Terri M.
I'm giving up on Paris By the Book. I can't stand that her name?...she complains about her husband not taking her to the real Paris, then complains about going to Paris, complains about being in Paris and then complains about staying in Paris. All this complaining after spending years dreaming of going to Paris. Seriously. I want to slap her.

Even if I hadn't been to Paris recently and just experienced my own dream trip, I think I would still want to slap her. SHE'S IN PARIS. HER DREAM
As much as I wanted to enjoy (and did, at times) this novel, I can only suppose it's a demonstration of how perfectly terrible people can treat each other in the name of 'art'.
I grabbed this one off the library bookshelf in about half a second: a book about a Paris bookstore? Absolutely I'll read this. First, I thought Mr. Callahan did a great job writing from the POV of a woman: any good author should be able to switch POVs from male to female and back. I found the following great: "In France,
Joy Gerbode
Jun 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
I don't know if words ... my words ... can truly review this book. I'm not sure I liked the story much at all. But I truly did enjoy the book! It is confusing ... and charming. It is humorous ... and haunting. It is many of the things I love in a book : a book about books, set in a bookstore, a hint of romance, a touch of humor, and an elusive mystery. Yet it is some of the things i find the hardest to enjoy in a book: loss, twisted plots, wondering what the story is really all about. Still, it ...more
Sep 17, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Less awful than I feared! CONGRATULATIONS TO THIS BOOK
Julie Failla Earhart
First there is the title: What an enticement! Paris and books; I GOTTA read this novel.

Then there is the synopsis: An eccentric novelist who has gone missing. His grieving family. A bookstore. An unfinished manuscript by said missing novelist. I was already anticipating how wonderful this book would be.

Then there is the first sentence: “Once a week, I chase men who are not my husband.” I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of this novel.

And finally I did.

Leah steals a copy of “The Red Balloon
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Play Book Tag: Paris By The Book / Liam Callanan - 3*** 3 9 Apr 06, 2020 04:56PM  

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Liam is the author of The Cloud Atlas (Delacorte, 2004; Dial, 2005), All Saints (Delacorte, 2007; Dial, 2008), Listen (Four Way, 2015) and the upcoming Paris by the Book (Dutton, 2018). He serves in the English department of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and was previously its chair, as well as coordinator of its Ph.D. program in creative writing. He has regularly contributed to local and ...more

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“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”  Theodor Geisel said...
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“Every town, every book, is a way to say, look, there’s a new way, a different way. Every book in a bookstore is a fresh beginning. Every book is the next iteration of a very old story. Every bookstore, therefore, is like a safe‑ deposit box for civilization.” 7 likes
“It’s only with mild surprise I find I don’t so much read anymore, but rather teeter, wonder, take flight, like Pascal, like Madeline, like Bemelmans, like Lamorisse, like my daughters. Like Robert. Like anyone who has ever started or finished a book, or a love affair, or confused the two, in sweet anticipation of the fall.” 3 likes
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