I received a free copy of My Part Time Paris Life for my honest review
About the Book:
Lisa Anselmo wrapped her entire life around her mother, a strong woman who was a defining force in Lisa’s life―maybe too defining. When her mother dies from breast cancer, Lisa realizes she hadn’t built a life of her own and struggles to find her purpose. Who is she without her mother―and her mother’s expectations?
Desperate for answers, she turns to her favorite city―Paris―and impulsively buys a small apartment, refusing to play it safe for the first time. What starts out as an act of survival sets Lisa on a course that reshapes her life in ways she never could have imagined. Suddenly, she’s living like a local in a city she thought she knew, but her high school French, while fine for buying bread at the corner boulangerie, goes only so far when Paris gives her a strong dose of real life. From dating to homeownership in a foreign country, Lisa quickly learns it’s not all picnics on the Seine, and starts to doubt herself―and her love of the city. But she came to Paris to be happy, and she can’t give up now. Isn’t happiness worth fighting for?
In the vein of Eat, Pray, Love and Wild, My (Part-time) Paris Life a story is for anyone who’s ever felt lost or hopeless, but still dreams of something more. This candid memoir explores one woman’s search for peace and meaning, and how the ups and downs of expat life in Paris taught her to let go of fear, find self-worth, and create real, lasting happiness in the City of Light.
About the Author:
LISA ANSELMO has spent most of her professional career in magazine publishing, working on such iconic brands as Allure, Mademoiselle, InStyle, and People. She’s been everything from a creative director to an opera singer, but ultimately, she has followed her passion for storytelling and inspiring people.
Anselmo started traveling to Paris regularly more than ten years ago―at first, to cover the fashion trade shows for a lifestyle website. But soon, she had cultivated friends―both Parisians and expats―and eventually built another life across the ocean. After losing her mother to breast cancer, she was motivated to make her other life official, buying an apartment in Paris’s Right Bank.
In 2014, she decided to leave her day job, and now splits her time between New York and Paris, where she writes full time. Her experiences inspired the memoir My (Part-Time) Paris Life, a candid narrative of a woman searching for hope and healing in the city she loves.
I tend to like stories of people moving to France or Italy as I would love to spend an extended amount of time in either of those two countries myself. That is why I was drawn to this book. What I didn’t think I was going to get was a young woman who never really grew up.
The chapters that take place in France are far superior to those that take place in the US and I did thoroughly enjoy the way the writer brought the neighborhoods alive. Her relationships with her friends were also a delight. One of her biggest problems though was her inability to understand the French people so it leads her to withdraw into herself and not try to meet new people. Well for heavens sake – learn the damn language! You don’t move to a foreign country and not even attempt to learn the language.
I was also frustrated with her seeming inability to just grow up. I’ve encountered this in other book and I don’t know if it’s because I’m older or because I had to grow up at a very early age or what but when I run into a woman in her thirties (forties?) who is still playing at being a child I lose my patience. I appreciate she lost her mother but many people do. Death is part of life, we go on.
So perhaps I was not the best reader for this book. It was well written, it just was not for me so I am not going to give it a rating.