Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Paris Time Capsule & Book Giveaway!!!

Author: Ella Carey
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance, Mystery
Type: Paperback
Pages: 290
Source: TLC Book Tours
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
First Published: May 26, 2015
First Line: "A parcel was wrapped in brown paper and tied with an unblemished silk ribbon."

Book Description from GoodReadsNew York–based photographer Cat Jordan is ready to begin a new life with her successful, button-down boyfriend. But when she learns that she’s inherited the estate of a complete stranger—a woman named Isabelle de Florian—her life is turned upside down.

Cat arrives in Paris to find that she is now the owner of a perfectly preserved Belle Époque apartment in the ninth arrondissement, and that the Frenchwoman’s family knew nothing about this secret estate. Amid these strange developments, Cat is left with burning questions: Who was Isabelle de Florian? And why did she leave the inheritance to Cat instead of her own family?

As Cat travels France in search of answers, she feels her grasp on her New York life starting to slip. With long-buried secrets coming to light and an attraction to Isabelle de Florian’s grandson growing too intense to ignore, Cat will have to decide what to let go of, and what to claim as her own.

My Review: I was eager to review this book as soon as I found out it was a mystery involving an American woman inheriting a Parisian apartment which hadn't been opened since WWII. Such an awesome premise!  Add in the fact that it is loosely based on a real Parisian apartment that was finally opened in 2010 after 70 years and you've just upped the 'I gotta read this' factor substantially.

I'd call this book a romance with a light historical fiction back drop and a mystery. There's a lot going on in this wee book.  Romance is typically not my favourite genre but the historical fiction aspect piqued my interest.  So it won't come as a big surprise that my favourite part of the book were the descriptions of Paris, the apartment and its contents.  I could have spent a lot more time reading about the vivid descriptions of Paris and the items in the apartment. Unfortunately one cannot live on descriptions of jambon baguettes and 1940's dresses alone (at least I don't think so).  Early on in the book it became apparent that there was less historical fiction/mystery and a lot more time focusing on the romantic aspect.  

The romance was cute if predictable which many readers may enjoy.  Cat, for the most part, is a good main character - flaws and all.  She had two different personalities - strong woman in France with Loic and the weak, unopinionated girlfriend to a cliched New York City socialite who patronized her constantly.  The weaker Cat was hard for me to read and for a smart woman she came off fairly obtuse about her love life.  But I enjoyed seeing her go through some self-development towards the end of the book.  

I was pleased to see the mystery become the focus of the book towards the end when the mystery twist was divulged.  The fact that I didn't guess the big reveal was great!  I also enjoyed how Carey took a small tidbit of history that many readers may not know about and brings it to the forefront and wraps her story around it.

If I had to give a couple of negatives about Paris Time Capsule it would be that at times the dialogue was weak and there was too much time spent on situations which were, in my opinion, unimportant to the overall plot.  For example, a lot of time was spent with the back and forth dialogue between Cat and Sylive of 'but you MUST take the inheritance' followed by 'no, YOU must have it, I insist'. Even with the reasons given it was still hard to understand why both sides were so adamant not to have the inheritance.  I'm sure a simpler way (perhaps getting Sylvie to claim it to reduce the high tax and then splitting it afterwards) would have been a much easier way to deal with the issue. I would have preferred for more time to be spent on engaging the reader in the historical mystery aspect which is why I picked up the book in the first place.  

Overall I found Paris Time Capsule to be a quick, entertaining, light read.  People who enjoy a quick read with a light historical fiction mystery and a strong romantic focus should enjoy this book.

My Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to TLC Book Tours and Ella Carey for providing me with a complimentary paperback copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Enter my Book Giveaway!!

The publisher has generously provided me one copy of Paris Time Capsule to give away! Just enter below!

Title: Paris Time Capsule
Author: Ella Carey
Format: Paperback
Shipping to: Canada and USA only
Duration of Giveaway: September 29 to October 7, 2015
Random Drawing - winner will be contacted via email. I will forward your name and address on to the publisher.

* one entry per person *

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I like a good mystery, but add in a setting of Paris, a favorite city of mine, makes this a book I want to own.

  2. Ahh Paris. It's on my vacation list for sure, Stacy. I'd love to be able to rent an apartment and stay for a month to really get a feel for the city and see if I could brush up on my French. I took French from grade 1 until first year of University but don't have a chance to use it here in southern Ontario very much. I'm sure I could definitely get by in Paris. :)

  3. What an intriguint premise for a story! Makes me want to know more & read the story.

  4. This novel sounds captivating and unforgettable. What a wonderful setting to explore and escape to. Since I have never visited Paris this would be an experience. I learned French since I was born in Montreal and grew up there, but left in 1977. Thanks for this memorable feature and great giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  5. My friend recommended this to me and I can't wait to dig in for myself!

  6. Nita, Traveller & J'nell - I'm so glad that you're all intrigued by this book's premise and setting! You can't go wrong with Paris, right? I hope you've all entered the giveaway! Bonne chance!

  7. I love everything about Paris, and this book sounds fab. Thank you for the opportunity!

  8. I'm right with ya, Saskmom. Good luck with the giveaway!

  9. I was so excited when the real story of the Paris apartment came out in the news. I can see why someone would want to write a story about it!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

  10. I love mysteries, historical fiction and anything set in Paris - so this book sounds like it's right up my alley!

  11. Congrats to Lisa for winning a copy of Paris Time Capsule!! Thanks to all for participating in the raffle.


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