Author Eleanor Brown shares new book ‘The Light of Paris’ at The Bookworm of Edwards
If you go …
What: Author event with Eleanor Brown, author of “The Light of Paris.”
When: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 17.
Where: The Bookworm of Edwards, 295 Main St., Riverwalk at Edwards.
Cost: $10, includes appetizers.
More information: Call 970-926-7323, or visit www.bookwormofedwards.com.
EDWARDS — “The more I searched, the more questions I had,” said New York Times best-selling author Eleanor Brown. “This book is the attempted answer to all of my unknowns.”
Today, Brown offers a chance for the Vail Valley to hear these answers, plus revelations about her own past, in the release of her second novel, “The Light of Paris.” Brown will speak at The Bookworm of Edwards at 6 p.m.
The book follows an unhappy Madeleine living a life she never wanted. To the outside world, her life looks perfect, but her marriage is a dead end and her family expectations are weighing her down. She aspires to be more like her grandmother, Margie, who lived the perfect life, at least in her granddaughter’s eyes.
One day, Madeleine discovers her grandmother’s diary from when she was much younger, living in Jazz Age Paris. With each page she turns, Madeleine’s picture of Margie shifts and changes to a completely different person.
“I was with my parents a few years ago, and naturally we were talking about Jazz Age Pairs,” Brown said, laughing. “As we’re having this conversation, they say, ‘You know, your grandmother lived there during that time and we have all the letters she wrote.’
EXPLORING HER GRANDMA’S PAST
“Now, I never knew my grandmother very well. Most of my memories of her are from when she was ill. As I started reading all of her letters, I was introduced to this incredible woman but was left with so many questions. ‘Light of Paris’ is the attempted answer to all the questions.”
Brown created a list of all the places her grandmother had mentioned in her letters and set off to Paris, determined to walk the same streets as her grandmother.
“I went over with the intent to try to follow my grandmother’s footsteps,” Brown said. “The problem was, I was trying to go to Paris in 1924, which you obviously can’t do. It turned into a really stressful experience. The difference between my grandmother and myself was that I had a list of things I had to get done and a list of places to check off. She was 23 when she went, and she had the best time, experiencing things organically. She went to explore and I went with a to-do list.”
Despite the stress of the trip, Brown found cherished memories. One of the places her grandmother had written about was the place she had lived with many other American girls in Paris. This was the place Brown had been looking for.
“You can go to this place where my grandmother spent most of her time,” Brown said. “It was summer when I visited, and I decided to go in and wander around. I went to the top floor and found an empty dorm room. I stepped over to the window and looked over the courtyard. I saw groups of girls conversing, I saw the city below and thought, ‘Wow, this was what she saw.’”
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