Unfulfilled at her job and unsuccessful in the dating department, Janice MacLeod doodled this question at her desk. Then she decided to make it a challenge.
Over the next few months, with a little math and a lot of determination, she saved up enough to buy two years of freedom in Europe.
But she had only been in Paris for a few days when she met a handsome butcher (with a striking resemblance to Daniel Craig)—and never went home again.
A love story in the vein of Almost French and Lunch in Paris, Paris Letters is a joyful romp through the City of Light, and an inspiring look at what can happen when we dare to create the life we want.
Realizing that her Parisian love affair would be forever, MacLeod began her own business on Etsy, creating beautifully-illustrated letters from Paris (eg. from Sourcebooks), inspired by artists like Percy Kelly and Beatrix Potter. She now paints and writes full-time, bringing beautiful things to subscribers around the world and reviving the lost art of letter-writing.
While reading Paris Letters I was somewhat reminded of Bridget Jones’s Diary, except instead of being based around low-brow humor, excessive boozing and the never ending hunt for the next man to bonk or marry, I was taken away on a daring trip of a lifetime, an experience in faith and hope that all will work out in the end. A love story − not only for Janice and Christophe, but for Paris and its lifestyle, the thrill of the what-if, and more importantly the fulfillment of one’s true heart’s desire.
Part memoir, part self-help book, Paris Letters has an easy flow about it that just sucks you in. I was engrossed from start to finish by its simply addictive narrative. Beautifully written, and interspersed with some very pretty artwork I was surprised to find I’d read half the book while pretending to cook dinner; and after a quick trip for takeaways to appease the kids, I finished Paris Letters with a few lists of my own to implement − I was inspired to find my own heart’s desire. And while there will be no crazy overseas trips for me, I am currently de-cluttering my house, my life and mind, while kick starting a new and exciting venture of my own!
A truly inspiring read that really resonated with me, I find it hard to fault Paris Letters at all. But if I was being overly picky, I’d suggest that maybe more of the artwork could have been in color, but even so, I was struck by their subtle beauty. 5 Stars
Reviewed by Cath Cowley
by Janice MacLeod
Published by Macmillan Australia