The Lost Girls of Paris
Book Review - The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff
2019 is off to such a good start! I heard about this book from an author I follow on social media. I reached out to the publicist to request a review copy, something I don’t do very often since I already have a backlog of books to get through. But dang, that was a really good decision on my part. You might remember Pam Jenoff from her last book: The Orphan’s Tale. Let me tell you, The Lost Girls of Paris is going to be a hit, too. I absolutely loved reading this book.
The Lost Girls of Paris by Pam Jenoff is about a group of British female spies sent into occupied France to help the resistance. They were recruited single-handedly by Eleanor Trigg, a relatively unknown woman within the SOE, but who ran the entire operation of female spies. The story jumps around in time a bit, starting part-way through the war and ending a few years after the war had ended. Grace finds an abandoned suitcase with a stack of pictures belonging to Eleanor at the Grand Central Station in New York. She begins piecing the story together to find out who Eleanor was and who the girls are in the stack of pictures.
You probably know by now that I read a lot of World War II books. I particularly enjoyed this one because it focuses on the role women played in occupied France. I liked the jumping back and forth through time - which is done quite a bit in historic novels, but Pam Jenoff chose to keep the timeframes pretty tight. Grace finding the suitcase wasn’t 50+ years later, it was just a few years after the war had ended. So she was compelled to find out the stories of girls that would have been her contemporaries. I liked that little twist on a typical approach to historical fiction.
I took photos for this book at the St. Louis City Hall. As you might suspect from its name, St. Louis was founded by a French man (Pierre Laclede Liguest) so there is a lot of French influence today. For example, St. Louis City Hall French-style architecture was inspired by Paris’ Hotel de Ville (their city hall) along with “architectural elements of the Chateau de Chambord on the Loire River in France.” Thus I chose to take pictures here, the most Parisian place in St. Louis, for The Lost Girls of Paris.