Fiction Review: The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain

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TITLE & AUTHOR: The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain
PUBLISHER: Gallic Books
RELEASE DATE: 2 March 2015
PAGES: 240





I got this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


Bookseller Laurent Letellier comes across an abandoned handbag on a Parisian street and feels impelled to return it to its owner. The bag contains no money, phone or contact information. But a small red notebook with handwritten thoughts and jottings reveals a person that Laurent would very much like to meet. Without even a name to go on, and only a few of her possessions to help him, how is he to find one woman in a city of millions?


The taxi had dropped her off on the corner of the boulevard. She was barely fifty metres from home. The road was lit by streetlamps which gave the buildings an orange glow, but even so she was anxious, as she always was when she returned late at night. She looked behind her and saw nobody. Light from the hotel opposite flooded the pavement between the two potted trees flanking its entrance. She stopped outside her door, unzipping her bag to retrieve her keys and security fob, and then everything happened very quickly.


The Red Notebook is a warm, charming novel. I loved the fact the book is set in Paris. Paris is my favourite city in the world and I go mad for books set in Paris. The concept of the novel is simple – a bookseller finds a handbag in his trash that belongs to a woman he thinks has been mugged and wants to return her property. What an irresistible mystery. I loved the way Laurent searches the bag and its contents looking for clues about the owner while in another part of the city she struggles to recover from the mugging. I loved the mystery aspect of The Red Notebook. I found this book uplifting and it made me want to be in Paris again. The author does a brilliant job of bring Paris to life. I could feel the streets beneath my feet. I smelled the food and hear the people. At times I felt like I was really in Paris. After reading The Red Notebook I felt like I’d been given a big warm hug. I went all mushy inside and that doesn’t happen very often.




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