Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Review & Giveaway: Last Christmas in Paris: A Novel of World War I by Heather Webb and Hazel Gaynor

New York Times bestselling author Hazel Gaynor has joined with Heather Webb to create this unforgettably romantic novel of the Great War.

August 1914. England is at war.

As Evie Elliott watches her brother, Will, and his best friend, Thomas Harding, depart for the front, she believes—as everyone does—that it will be over by Christmas, when the trio plan to celebrate the holiday among the romantic cafes of Paris.

But as history tells us, it all happened so differently… Evie and Thomas experience a very different war. 

Frustrated by life as a privileged young lady, Evie longs to play a greater part in the conflict—but how?—and as Thomas struggles with the unimaginable realities of war he also faces personal battles back home where War Office regulations on press reporting cause trouble at his father’s newspaper business. 

Through their letters, Evie and Thomas share their greatest hopes and fears—and grow ever fonder from afar. Can love flourish amid the horror of the First World War, or will fate intervene?

Christmas 1968. With failing health, Thomas returns to Paris—a cherished packet of letters in hand—determined to lay to rest the ghosts of his past. But one final letter is waiting for him…

Publication Date: October 3, 2017
William Morrow Paperbacks
Paperback & eBook; 384 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction

I have been a fan of both of these authors for a while now and was thrilled when I heard they were working together on a new book. Seems to be a thing these days, to collaborate and I always go in with a bit of hesitation because it doesn't always work. Can they deliver a smooth story without it sounding choppy making the reader aware of two different writing styles? With the Last Christmas in Paris it worked wonderfully and to be honest I couldn't tell which author wrote what. 

This book begins at the dawn of World War 1 with Evie writing letters to her brother Will and his best friend Tom. As the letters continues through the war years the authors were able to give the depth of character needed to deliver a realistic story of heartache and love. It's a brutal time and not always are the wounds visible, worry and depression are common and a sense of uselessness for those left at home, there is the urge to do something but what?

The book is divided into war years with more time spent at the beginning years rather than the last few. I would have loved to have seen more of the last years of the war and (I can't really say too much for fear of giving anything away), but I found it a little rushed there at the end and it was the part I was most looking forward to. But don't get me wrong I still loved the book and highly recommend it. The research involved was evident, it's a wonderfully written book of strength, love & loss and the power of human endurance.

HEATHER WEBB is the author of historical novels Becoming Josephine and Rodin's Lover, and the anthology Fall of Poppies, which have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Cosmopolitan, Elle, France Magazine, and more, as well as received national starred reviews. RODIN’S LOVER was a Goodreads Top Pick in 2015. Up and coming, Last Christmas in Paris, an epistolary love story set during WWI will release October 3, 2017, and The Phantom's Apprentice, a re-imagining of the Gothic classic Phantom of the Opera from Christine Daae's point of view releases February 6, 2018. To date, her novels have sold in ten countries. Heather is also a professional freelance editor, foodie, and travel fiend.

HAZEL GAYNOR is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of A Memory of Violets and The Girl Who Came Home, for which she received the 2015 RNA Historical Novel of the Year award. Her third novel The Girl from the Savoy was an Irish Times and Globe & Mail Canada bestseller, and was shortlisted for the BGE Irish Book Awards Popular Fiction Book of the Year. The Cottingley Secret and Last Christmas in Paris will be published in 2017. Hazel was selected by US Library Journal as one of ‘Ten Big Breakout Authors’ for 2015 and her work has been translated into several languages. Originally from Yorkshire, England, Hazel now lives in Ireland.


During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 2 copies of Last Christmas in Paris!

To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on October 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to residents in the US & Canada only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

  Last Christmas in Paris

1 comment:

  1. I too have read and loved both of these Authors work. Looking forward to reading The Last Christmas In Paris. Thank you for your thoughts.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) ao (dot) com