Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review: Belle Epoque By: Elizabeth Ross

Belle EpoqueBelle Epoque by Elizabeth Ross
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

belle é·poque
An era of artistic and cultural refinement in a society, especially in France at the beginning of the 20th century

A wonderful, beautiful story weaved in Paris 1888. The construction of the Eiffel Tower lends to the a tale of beauty, friendship, forgiveness, dreams, and art.
Maude Pichon has run away from home to escape her father marrying her off to the butcher. She wants life, she wants to experience the world - so from the seaside town in Brittany she goes to Paris. The dream and illusion of Paris reveal hardship and choices of either eating or having a place to live.
By chance she answers an ad - for ugly women. This is where she is introduced to the position of a repoussoir, a woman set up to repulse the sight of a potential suitor, bringing his eyes back to the girl she stands beside with a new comparison.
Enter Countess Dubern... she hires Maude to stand beside her daughter Isabelle and creates a lie that Maude must follow. Isabelle is not to know who or what Maude is. Maude walks a tightrope between work and dreams, between friendship and betrayal, truth and lies.

As a reader, you will get lost in Paris. The vividness that Ms. Ross displays on the pages, the rich history, and the complexity of the characters - simply divine. A must read.

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