Hannah Bond moved from Orlando, Florida to England after her grandmother, the woman who raised her, passes away. Her mother Marla is a free-spirit and their relationship is distant and complex. Marla shows up unexpectedly at her apartment and tells her that while cleaning through the belongings of her mother/Hannah’s grandmother, she learns that they have jointly inherited an apartment in Paris that had belonged to her great-grandmother Ivy. They discover that the apartment has stood frozen in time since 1940. While sorting through her possessions, the mystery of Ivy’s life in Paris unfolds.
Lost in Paris is told in dual timelines. In the present, Hannah is trying to come to terms with her trust issues caused by a series of disappointments starting with her relationship with her mother, who has no idea who her father is. Marla’s return to Paris brings her back to a time when she was a groupie, at seventeen years old, of a punk rock band. The women have to work together to sort out their new inheritance. They uncover a diary which details Ivy’s life in Paris. Her writing starts in the late 1920s. While trying to find work as a clothing designer, Ivy finds love and is introduced to an extraordinary group of ex-pat artists including F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. What a social circle!
I loved being transported to Paris both in the past and present. Author Elizabeth Thompson’s descriptions of all the settings are wonderful. The cafes, the bars, the apartment untouched for decades. The story is engaging and emotional. I was equally taken by the present day story of Hannah and Marla as with Ivy’s, making this book appealing to those who read both contemporary and historical fiction. This fast-paced book has it all - family, secrets, love, second chances, Paris.
Many thanks to Gallery Books | Simon & Schuster, NetGalley and author Elizabeth Thompson for the opportunity to escape into Lost in Paris before its publication. I didn’t want it to end.
Rated 4.25 out of 5 stars.
Contemporary & Historical Fiction.
Publication Date: April 13, 2021.