About the book, The Paris Secret
• Paperback: 416 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (November 14, 2017)
In this glittering tale of forgotten treasures and long-held secrets, international bestseller Karen Swan explores one woman’s journey to discovering the truth behind an abandoned apartment and a family whose mysteries may be better left undiscovered.
When high-powered fine art agent Flora Sykes is called in to assess objets d’art in a Paris apartment that has been abandoned since WWII, she is skeptical at first—until she discovers that the treasure trove of paintings is myriad…and priceless. The powerful Vermeil family to whom they belong is eager to learn more and asks Flora to trace the history of each painting.
Despite a shocking announcement that has left her own family reeling, Flora finds herself thrown into the glamorous world of the Vermeils. But she soon realizes there is more to this project than first appears. As she researches the provenance of their prize Renoir, she uncovers a scandal surrounding the painting—and a secret that goes to the very heart of the family. The fallout will place Flora in the eye of a storm that carries her from London to Vienna to the glittering coast of Provence.
Xavier Vermeil, the brusque scion of the family, is determined to separate Flora from his family’s affairs in spite of their powerful attraction to one another. Just what are the secrets he is desperately trying to hide? And what price is Flora willing to pay to uncover the devastating truth…?
Buy, read, and discuss The Paris Secret:
Karen Swan worked as a fashion editor before moving into writing fiction. She is married with three children and lives in the Ashdown Forest in East Sussex, writing her books in a treehouse overlooking the South Downs. She is the author of the novels The Summer Without You, Christmas at Claridges, and The Perfect Present.
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Karen Swan’s The Paris Secret is the perfect book to get lost in on a chilly autumn evening. It’s got large amounts of mystery and intrigue, and just enough romance to keep things from feeling too cold, as well as just a dash of family drama.
I loved that the female lead, Flora, was an expert in fine art – that’s so much more interesting than being another financial wiz, plus it gave author Swan a good reason for vivid descriptions of places (Paris itself, as well as the apartment filled with art and antiques) and things (the objets d’art referenced on the back cover).
It’s always so much fun to see glamorous places and insert yourself into sectors of society you wouldn’t normally inhabit, through Flora’s eyes, we readers are able to do that. Her experience with the Vermeil family is both enchanting and alarming, and there were moments I was glad I was only reading a novel.
The intrigue in The Paris Secret kept me interested from page one to the end of the novel, and I’m so in love with Swan’s writing voice – she gets the tone of mystery with a bit of warmth and flirting just right – that I’m eager to check out her other work.
If you love a good mystery, but want one with a softer side for the holiday season, The Paris Secret is perfect for you.
Goes well with cappuccino and a croissant filled with creme de marrons (chestnut cream).
Tuesday, November 14th: Books and Bindings
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