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It's Not Love, It's Just Paris Paperback

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AuthorPatricia Engel
LanguageEnglish
PublisherGrove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press
Publication Date28-08-2014
Book DescriptionThis is a novel to get lost in.--Miami Herald Lita del Cielo has been granted one year to pursue her studies in Paris before returning to work in the family business. She moves into a gently crumbling Left Bank mansion known as "The House of Stars," where the spirited but bedridden Countess S raphine rents out rooms to young women visiting Paris to work, study, and, unofficially, to find love. Guarded at first, Lita keeps a cool distance from the other girls, who both intimidate and fascinate her. Then Lita meets the charming and enigmatic, Cato, the son of a notorious right-wing politician, and her world shifts. It's Not Love, It's Just Paris is a spellbinding love story, a portrait of a Paris caught between old world grandeur and the international greenblood elite, and an exploration of one woman's journey to distinguish honesty from artifice and lay claim to her own life.
Editorial ReviewPraise for IT'S NOT LOVE, IT'S JUST PARIS "'We'll always have Paris, ' lovers of this glorious city have been saying this to each other ever since Humphrey Bogart uttered those words in Casablanca. We rediscover a modern and eclectic Paris in Patricia Engel's astonishing first novel, a story as grand and dazzling as its setting, yet as intimate and powerful as a love story that just won't quit." --Edwidge Danticat "Wise and accomplished...Beautifully written and executed...There are at least two ways to judge a novel: by how fast you turn the pages or by how many times you have to stop to underline a passage. My copy of It's Not Love, It's Just Paris is all marked up. Engel, whose first book was the acclaimed story collection Vida, has uncanny insight into the human condition. Through Lita, she speaks a profound language of young love and desire...Engel's considerable gifts are on display here."--Benjamin Saenz, The New York Times Book Review "Wondrous . . . Everything about the relationship -- the conversations, the plans, the increasing dependency -- is believable, including the roadblocks. You will find yourself consumed in the ebb and flow of Lita and Cato, nodding in understanding and remembrance as they struggle to find their footing. Try to read "Paris" while there is still some length to the day. When you finish, you can arise from the sand or the lounge chair and still observe the sunlit world around you. You will be able to resume your normal life, ignore the ache in your throat and suppress the memories of everything you have loved and lost."--Alice Short, Los Angeles Times "Spare prose laced with nuggets of genuine wisdom...it is a testament to [Engel's] large talent that the story culminates with an emotional force that is both surprising and deeply affecting."--Thomas Chatterton Williams, San Francisco Chronicle "Absorbing... intimate in scope, erotic and, by the end, entirely unexpected.... Engel she has an eye for detail. She knows how to drown the reader in a sense of enchantment... She writes exquisite moments... The power of this excellent novel is in how Engel holds us in her thrall as she complicates where Lita is going and what she will leave behind. The heart this story breaks, might be your own."--Roxanne Gay, The Nation "Like any word whose shimmer has dulled from overuse, Paris can seem like a clich in itself. . . But early on Patricia Engel...shows that her writing can still be original. . . . [Engel's] fresh language leads us right into the middle of yet another love story in Paris, and a star-crossed one to boot. But by the time you get there, you may already be hooked and feeling weepy for these two young lovers."-- Susannah Meadows, The New York Times "Distills the essence of the immigrant experience. [Articulates] that trying to start a life in a strange land is an artistic feat of the highest order, one that ranks with (or perhaps above) our greatest cultural achievements."--Joe Fassler, The Atlantic "Irresistibly engaging . . . Refreshingly nostalgic. Even the silences between Engel's characters are filled with intimate meaning . . . [The] plot line, tipping over the ugly rock of xenophobia, balances Engel's City of Light travelogue with a welcome darkness . . . Engel [has a] gift for vivid and telling detail."--Ben Crandell, The Sun-Sentinel "A post-American Dream tale."--Jose Manuel Simian, New York Daily News "Engel approaches her love affair without florid prose or salacious encounters. Instead, she installs her shy, serious protagonist, Lita del Cielo, in a Parisian boarding house . . . lets her slowly fall for the quiet son of an infamous politician, and pits her new life abroad against her old one at home in the U.S. It's heady and cool approach brings real substance to the summer fling while making it an antidote to the usual seasonal fluff."--Time Out New York (Summer Reads List) "Has an appealing fairy tale quality . . . Engel has a knack for showing how Paris's charms are both real and always verging on cliche."--Publishers Weekly "As a coming-of-age novel, It's Not Love, It's Just Paris might sound as if its theme is rather well-trod, but the title puts you on notice. This is no saccharine tale of awakening. Rather, it's a clear-eyed recasting of a classic storyline executed with confidence and just enough city-of-lights magic by Miami author Patricia Engel to conjure up something that manages to be familiar and new. This is a novel to get lost in."-- Amy Driscoll, Miami Herald "The number one reason you need to read this novel is to experience Engel's writing. It's Not Love, It's Just Paris is wry, melancholy, enchanting, seductive, and downright delectable. I savored every single page." -BookRiot "Remarkable, razor-sharp. . . . A compassionate read." --Booklist (starred review) "Unpredictable and touching . . . Warm, quirky and intelligently observed. A bonus is [Engel's] wonderful evocation of Paris -- if you haven't been lucky enough to spend a year learning to love that glorious city (or if you have and want a vivid reminder), this bright and charming novel is the next best thing to a visit." -- Colette Bancroft, Tampa Bay Times "Lots of readers have wanted to know what Engel would write after her arresting debut, Vida, a PEN/Hemingway finalist. And here it is, an enticingly written work."--Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal "Vibrant. Enchanting. Sensual. Engel continues to be a refreshing voice in literature. Patricia's prose is seductive; her narrative evocative. She does a great job of bringing her characters to life and making us care about them, cheer for them, cry with them. This is a great book."--Latina Book Club "The perfect page turner to end your summer."--Latina Magazine "This story is not only for those who have been to Paris, but also for those who have ever felt like outcasts and hoped for a haven. The writing is honest, the characters real, and the ending not-so-predictable. For anyone who has ever been to Paris or has ever suffered in love, It's Not Love, It's Just Paris is about finding a home away from home, finding yourself, and finding amongst all the distractions of obligation where your true passions reside." -The Thursday Review
About the AuthorPatricia Engel's debut, Vida, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Fiction Award, Young Lions Fiction Award, winner of a Florida Book Award and Independent Publisher Book Award, and named Best Book of the Year by NPR, Barnes & Noble, and L.A. Weekly. Patricia lives in Miami.
Number of Pages254
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It's Not Love, It's Just Paris Paperback

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