The Red Notebook Review

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THE RED NOTEBOOK BY ANTOINE LAURAIN | Goodreads | Book Depository
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Many thanks to publisher and Sophie, who send me this copy.

Heroic bookseller Laurent Letellier comes across an abandoned handbag on a Parisian street. There’s nothing in the bag to indicate who it belongs to, although there’s all sorts of other things in it. Laurent feels a strong impulse to find the owner and tries to puzzle together who she might be from the contents of the bag. Especially a red notebook with her jottings, which really makes him want to meet her. 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?

I absolutely loved everything about this book and I only wish it was longer, but then again it’s just perfect as the way it is.

What impressed me most of all was the writing, which is great. The vivid descriptions make the story realistic and you somehow feel that you’re sitting on a chair, observing the characters.  This book managed to make me like it almost immediately, even from the first page. The author rarely describes feelings, but instead he leaves this task to us. We understand how they feel from their actions and we judge them based on what they do.

Initial thoughts:
1. I was immediately transported to the streets of Paris, making me desperate to visit it. A small part of romance comes from the city itself and there’s a little mystery involved, which is the perfect combination to make the story brilliant!
2. I absolutely loved how the author ended this novella and the fact that he decided to mention Modiano. The ending was perfect, proving once more the excellence of his writing.
3. My favourite quote:

Can you experience nostalgia for something that hasn’t happened? We talk of regrets about the course of our lives, when we are almost certain we have taken the wrong decision; but one can also be enveloped in a sweet and mysterious euphoria, a sort of nostalgia for what might have been.

4. It took me a while to decide how many stars should I give this book. At first, I thought of 4.5 but then I tried to remember what I didn’t like and there was nothing. For me, this book is perfect and I hope you’ll like it as much as I do. It’s a clear 5 stars for me!

I just want to stay in bed and reread it all over again. When you pick it up, I definetely recommend you to have a glass of red wine nearby. Amazing book, brilliant writing!

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