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Paris Echo

by Sebastian Faulks

Books of the Month Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel eBooks of the Month Modern and Classic Literary Fiction

LoveReading View on Paris Echo

Classic stuff with Paris very much at its centre.  Although set in the present, the past echoes through it as various people brush up against history, politics and atrocities. 

Our main characters are a 19-year old, illegal, Moroccan immigrant, Tariq, and a lonely, middle-aged American academic, Hannah, bruised by a love affair in Paris ten years earlier.  Tariq works in a fried chicken shop with a couple of Algerians who discuss the brutality of the French in the war of independence.

This echoes the interviews Hannah is transcribing for her research about women under German occupation.  A quirk of fate allows Tariq to become Hannah’s lodger and then translator.  Although a comparatively short book, at under three hundred pages, there is a huge amount within it.  Faulks is without a doubt an impressive novelist.  This is a must-read.

Featured in Episode 5 of the LoveReading Podcast


Sarah Broadhurst

Paris Echo Synopsis

Here is Paris as you have never seen it before - a city in which every building seems to hold the echo of an unacknowledged past, the shadows of Vichy and Algeria. American postdoctoral researcher Hannah and runaway Moroccan teenager Tariq have little in common, yet both are susceptible to the daylight ghosts of Paris. Hannah listens to the extraordinary witness of women who were present under the German Occupation; in her desire to understand their lives, and through them her own, she finds a city bursting with clues and connections. Out in the migrant suburbs, Tariq is searching for a mother he barely knew. For him in his innocence, each boulevard, Metro station and street corner is a source of surprise. In this urgent and deeply moving novel, Faulks deals with questions of empire, grievance and identity. With great originality and a dark humour, Paris Echo asks how much we really need to know if we are to live a valuable life.  

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MEGA GIVEAWAY! Win a year's worth of reading with our 2019 Star Books!

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Paris Echo Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

Yet another #1 from the excellent Sebastian Faulks – deep, multi-layered story blending the historic past with modern day Paris. Full review

Phylippa Smithson

A brilliant, complex, engrossing novel about two strangers in Paris who find echoes from the past which enable them to discover more about history and themselves. Full review

Ann Peet

American academic, Hannah and Moroccan student, Tariq are both in Paris hoping to deal with echoes of the past. But there are many ways to take their first steps into the future. Full review

Heather Shaw

Two very different people come together in Paris with differing purposes - a researcher researching women in Nazi occupied Paris and a Moroccan male seeking answers about his dead mother and adventure. Beautifully written. Full review

Jane Brown

Paris' shameful and dark history, insightful and current Full review

Agnieszka Higney

Always a joy – a new Sebastian Faulks’ novel Full review

Sarah Webb

Paris Echo cannot be read in a single sitting. Firstly, because a Métro map needs consulting in order to appreciate Tariq’s (meta)physical journey. And secondly, since a defibrillator’s required to jolt the reader back to life after reading heart-stopping testimony Hannah hears from WWII survivors. Full review

Lee Ruddin

A fascinating novel that combines modern day characters in Paris with 'echos' of the city's past. Full review

Emma Barton

What a total privilege to read. A beautifully written, steady read, that felt real, and relevant. Full review

katie macaulay

I am not familiar with Faulks' work so this was my first foray into his writing....and I loved it. Full review

Alison Bradbury

As you would expect from this author, it's a beautifully written, very thoughtful piece of literature-recommended. Full review

Evelyn Love-Gajardo

The structure was very unusual. Full review

Stephanie Harding

Paris Echo Press Reviews

`Faulks is beyond doubt a master' Financial Times

`Faulks captures the voice of a century' Sunday Times

`The most impressive novelist of his generation' Sunday Telegraph

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781786330215
Publication date: 06/09/2018
Publisher: Hutchinson an imprint of Cornerstone
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781786330215
Publication date: 6th September 2018
Author: Sebastian Faulks
Publisher: Hutchinson an imprint of Cornerstone
Format: Hardback
Genres: Books of the Month, Reader Reviewed Books, eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,

About Sebastian Faulks

Sebastian Faulks was born and brought up in Newbury, Berkshire. He worked in journalism before starting to write books. He is best known for the French trilogy, The Girl at the Lion d'Or, Birdsong and Charlotte Gray (1989-1997) and is also the author of a triple biography, The Fatal Englishman (1996); a small book of literary parodies, Pistache (2006); and the novels Human Traces (2005) and Engleby (2007). He lives in London with his wife and their three children. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1993 and appointed CBE for services to literature in 2002. He lives in London with ...

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