Paris Dreaming – by Katerina Lawrence

Categories:Book Reviews

Paris Dreaming by award winning beauty writer, Katerina Lawrence, is a must read for anyone who considers themselves to be a Francophile.  Part memoir and French history lesson, Lawrence will impress the reader not only with her knowledge and passion for all things Paris and her relation to legendary French writer Marcel Proust but with her outstanding knowledge and trivia about all things French history and Brigitte Bardot.  Some of the facts will surprise even the most confident French history enthusiast when the author reveals aspects of French history concerning important historic figures, how French culture helped shape present day attitudes and beliefs to words like “etiquette” and how Captain Bougainvillea of France, to whom the ornamental and vine like plant was attributed, almost colonised Australia to the impact made in French history by writers such as George Sand, Voltaire and Baudelaire.  The old adage, “one should never judge a book by its cover” does not apply here, as the pretty pink cover with a drawing of une femme resembling the author in a pink princess style dress with hair up in a chignon looking out onto a guilded skyline of Paris instantly captivates the imagination and offers a hint of the delights that may unfold within the pages of this beautiful hard cover.

Lawrence’s novel is without a doubt a love letter and tribute to Paris and Parisians – a city and culture that the author holds dear to her heart and has visited countless times throughout her life and continues to do so any opportunity she gets.  Paris is more than just a city to Lawrence, it is her fairytale wonderland, emotional compass and soulmate – a friend that she can return to time after time to recharge her mind, body and spirit and has done so through all stages of her life.  For the author, their is no greater love or friend than la belle Paris, who has played a pivotel role in shaping Lawrence’s attitudes, beliefs, matters of the heart and providing the answers to those most complex questions in life.  At the formidable age of five Lawrence was captivated by the majestic beauty of the City of Light when visiting the city for the first time with her parents.  Seduced by the French language, culture and ways of Parisian life from a young age, the city left a life long fairytale impression in the author’s mind – experiences that are conveyed so lovingly and evocatively throughout the pages of her memoir.  Journey with Katerina to her beloved Paris throughout the chapters of her life which are categorised chronologically to correspond to the important episodes and milestones of her life.  Become more entranced with Katerina and Paris with every chapter of her memoir where the author reveals Paris to us through her eyes and of her experiences throughout her life’s journey and endless soul searching through the streets of this remarkable city.

Paris Dreaming, by Katerina Lawrence is as endearing as it is informative and will have you dreaming of your next trip to Paris or perhaps your very first.   This memoir is a true delight and not to be rushed but savoured like a glass of Champagne or a sweet macaron as you meander through the rues of Paris alongside Katerina, who becomes your very own tour guide best friend, as she reveals “what the City of Light taught her about life, love and lipstick” and discover or perhaps rediscover those aspects of Paris, French culture and even your inner Parisian that you were not quite aware of before.

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