I’m back with another blog tour and this time it’s for Someday in Paris by Olivia Lara. Thanks to Rachel @ Rachel’s Random Resources for organising this blog tour, and to NetGalley and the author for providing a copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
Be sure to click on the banner below to check out the rest of the bloggers on tour!
Goodreads: Someday in Paris
Release Date: 14 May 2020
Genre: Historical Romance, Women’s Fiction
Finding the one is only the beginning…
1954. Zara is fifteen the first time she meets Leon. During a power cut in a small French museum, the two spend one short hour in the dark talking about their love for art, Monet and Paris. Neither knows what the other looks like. Both know their lives will never be the same.
1963. In Paris, Leon no longer believes he will ever find the girl he lost that night. After dreaming about him for years, Zara thinks she has already found him. When they meet at an exhibition, they don’t recognise each other – yet the way they feel is so familiar…
Over the course of twenty years, Zara and Leon are destined to fall in love again and again. But will they ever find a way to be together?
OLIVIA LARA was born and raised in Bucharest in a family of booklovers and storytellers. Since university she has worked as a journalist and marketer in Romania, France and the United States. She is currently a marketing executive in San Francisco and lives in the Bay Area with her husband, young daughter and four cats. Someday in Paris is her first novel
“But what a beautiful, impossible, magic dream it was.”
I’m truly at odds with how I feel about this book because, on the one hand, I had some issues with inconsistencies and pacing. But on the other hand, I couldn’t stop reading it, I didn’t want to put it down to sleep or to wait until my workday ended, and it also made me cry because FEELINGS. So. Many. Feelings. Friends!!! In the end, I decided that my feelings win in this instance and although my rating would be closer to 3.5 stars, I’ve decided to round up (on GR) because, despite my brain’s attempts to put me off this book, my heart found itself really invested in this romance.
I think the first thing I have to say is that you really have to suspend your disbelief with this story. Yes, there are elements of magical realism in the form of dreams that tie in with the concept of soulmates, but there are also a lot of coincidences and improbable things that happen that made it a little difficult to believe at times. This was one of the issues that I had with the story, however, it didn’t take long for me to get back into it once I started reading again.
“If it’s meant for you, my boy, this big world will become small, at the right time.”
The writing was pretty easy to read. You really can’t help but feel for the characters and the situations they find themselves in over the years, and these situations often made it feel like my heart was caught in a vice! There is an element of insta love which wasn’t my favourite (because we know how I feel about that trope) but props to the author for being able to make me see past that and to end up really rooting for this romance that spans over two decades. The pull between our MCs and their almost desperation to find each other again was palpable and I think that’s what really made this book for me. Those feelings of angst, longing, and hope were almost tangible and I was so caught up in a whirlwind of emotions because of it.
I (mostly) liked our MCs but I didn’t feel invested at all in the side characters who played big roles in their lives. They were just one-dimensional plot devices who were really awful people and I did not care that they were heartbroken or angry or whatever. They were manipulative and selfish and I jus wasn’t having it (lol). Perhaps I’d feel differently if they weren’t flat but they were, and I didn’t understand why our MCs continued to accept having them in their lives. At times our MCs also made mind-boggling decisions that threw me completely because it was so out of character, but the part of me that was loving the drama and romance was willing to push past it.
“It’s about dreams and taking chances. Missed opportunities and mistakes. Loss and sacrifice. But above all, it is about love. The kind of love that survives time, distance… even death. The kind of love I wish for you.”
Overall, I don’t think I’d recommend this book to those who just “like” or “tolerate” romance. But I think I would recommend it to those who, like me, love love and are purely in it for the romance and can look past logic because love isn’t always logical, right? Honestly, I think hopeless romantics who love to suffer through a bit of angst and agony in love to get to the HEA would enjoy this book, and it’s those intense emotions that make the read more enjoyable for us.
TL;DR: This was not at all what I was expecting when I started reading it. The story presents an interesting concept for knowing and finding your soulmate and it’s something I don’t recall having read before in romance. However, you will have to suspend your disbelief and endure a fair bit of angst and agony, but ultimately the journey will be worth it! This is definitely one for the hopeless romantics out there.
Have you read Someday in Paris or is it on your TBR?