It's Not Love, It's Just Paris

Grove. Aug. 2013. 272p. ISBN 9780802121516. $25; ebk. ISBN 9780802193278. F
In 1997, American Lita del Cielo receives the blessing of her Colombia-born parents to study in Paris for a year. The House of Stars, the shabby-chic Left Bank mansion-turned-boarding house where she resides, is filled with an assortment of international coeds and their assorted lovers, watched over by a countess house mother. At first aloof, Lita soon meets Cato, the son of a controversial French political figure, and embarks on a relationship that might force her off the path her parents have set for her—joining them in their successful family business.
VERDICT A follow-up to Engel's award-winning short-story collection, Vita, this debut novel tells a timeless tale of fragile young love and awakening in the City of Light. Perfect for fans of foreign-set contemporary fiction and classic literature alike, it could also appeal to mature young adults, and reading groups may find Engel worthy of discussion after reading Ernest Hemingway or Henry Miller. [See Prepub Alert, 2/11/13.]
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