Cover Image: After Paris

After Paris

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Member Reviews

This was a new-to-me author and I appreciated the introduction I normally read rom coms so wasn’t sure what to expect with three main character studies, but I was pleasantly surprised. There were a lot of parts of this book that I paused at just to be introspective, and I really appreciate that type of writing. I would recommend this as a great beach read or even a book to cozy up to on a rainy day. 

Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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~thank you to the publisher Head of Zeus, Aria and NetGalley for the advanced readers copy in exchange for an honest review ~

I have extremely complicated feelings about this one. 
On the one hand, I devoured this is one sitting because it was so enthralling and I just needed to know what would happen next. Knowing the secrets and just waiting to see them be reveal honestly was making my heart race throughout, I haven't been so completely captivated in a while, granted the reveals felt anti-climatic when we did come to it.

But on the other hand, and I'm sure this is not meant to be the takeaway from this story - I just could not for the life of me understand why Alice, Jules and Nina were ever friends in the first place. I found their individual stories so compelling (albeit a little toxic) but their friendship made absolute no sense to me. When I think of true sisterhood and friendship, I wouldn't think of trio as exemplar of this. The secrets that they kept from each other, big secrets at that, that really affected one another's lives completely blew my mind. It was completely unsurprising that they drifted apart the way they do, when you spend the first half learning how their friendship was riddled with lack of communication and jealousy. Did 'After Paris' capture the intricacies that come with female friendships? Sure. But I think I struggled with understanding the trio, when my own personal experiences and beliefs of what these friendships should be is so far removed from I read. I'm in awe their friendship lasted as long as it did if I'm being honest, but I still appreciated how it all came together in the end and the acceptance they found with each other. The epilogue was so sweet to read to.

The structure of this book was confusing to navigate - not only the back and forth between time periods but working out who was narrating at any given time. 

That being said, Nicole Kennedy expertly handled many important topics throughout such as addiction, abortion, infertility, neurodiversity in a manner that never felt forced, but engaging and real. 

Thoughts on the friendship aside, this was an enjoyable read that has me counting days till August when I get off the Eurostar at Gare du Nord and walk along the Seine with my closest gal pals!

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Such a great read! There are so many aspects of each friend that feels relatable and real, all while exploring the importance of honest connection in friends. Loved it!
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Thank you Netgalley and the Publisher for my ARC in exchange for my honest review. This was an enjoyable book.
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Unfortunately, I didn’t connect with this book as much as I thought I would. The beginning of the story was too much of a slow burn and the character development was confusing. After multiple attempts I ultimately DNF this book but I can see how some readers may really enjoy the story - it just was not my cup of tea.
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After Paris is a wonderful story about female friendships, growing up, finding out who you are and what you really want-  all the best things in a story like this. It starts with some very posh debutante types about to attend a ball in Paris - I had no idea that even happened! - and we meet Alice Digby who is there with her friend Teddy, who she doesnt find attractive at all. honest. Whilst they are getting ready for the ball, we also meet the beautiful artistic Nina, who is at the ball because of her father, and sensible (almost dowdy) Jules who is there to watch from the sidelines. The four teenagers decide to make a break for it, and leave the ball in search of wild Parisian adventures - and a circle of best friends is born that night.

Fast forward 20 years when the women are now meeting up for a regular trip to Paris to spend time together. Julia is a city exec who is desperate to have a child, Nina is head of a fabulous chain of chic bakeries , and Alice married Teddy, had three children and is trying to find out what she wants from life.

The story flits between their teenage idealism and passions to the current day where they have all such different lifestyles from one another and fear they may be drifting apart. The latest weekend in Paris uncovers deeply hidden truths for all of them and they return as very different people from when they set off. The blurb on the back tells us that they don't return together - although this is quite a long way into the story - so the seed is set from the beginning for a falling out, and how this can be handled

It is an ideal summer read, it will make you appreciate your friends and what you have, and maybe question what you're really after.  Its very easy to read and get engrossed into, the friendship and love between the three of them is strong and real. It also tackles some trickier issues which aren't often covered in female-led fiction, which was refreshing to see.
A solid 4 stars from me!
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After Paris is a novel which follows the friendship and falling out of three women - Jules, Alice and Nina - who meet in Paris as teenagers and forge a relationship that grows as they do as women.
It is almost 20 years after they meet and they have a weekend together to refresh and refocus - but by the end of the trip, each one comes back alone and swears the others have ghosted her.

The blurb caught my attention as I think ghosting people has become all too much of a reality in our modern techno-focused world, Kennedy skillfully weaves the plot together, revealing just enough to keep the reader hanging on for more. I thought each of the women had a very real issue that prevented them from reaching out and the author doesn't shy away from big topics like addiction, abortion, neurodiversity and handles them deftly where the issue doesn't overtake the character.

What I enjoyed most about this novel was that the love story was between the friends and celebrated the richness of long term female friendships.
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Friends can become your family as they truly support you to become the best versions of yourself. Jules, Alice and Nina may have met simply due to coincidence but they grew to be sisters in all sense and purpose.  What saddened me as a reader that when they needed each other  and had a whole different side of themselves that caused serious emotional and in Jules case financially as well, they simply didn't feel they had each other and was effectively "ghosted". What's App remained silent. I was so happy that each spoke their truth and regained their friendship. Like Paul said, they raised their arms to the sky and celebrated life. It is love that matters.
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This book was a fun treat! I loved it! It was a good reset after I read a heavier book. It kept me flipping pages well past my bedtime!!
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Overall it was a good book to read, but ...
- the book synopsis says "A grown-up, thought-provoking and gripping novel set in Paris about motherhood, friendship, secrets, and the face we present to the world." so I was expecting more from the relationship between the girls; you will probably relate to at least one of them because they are very different and have different backgrounds, but the relationship could have been explored more in depth
- in my opinion the switch between past and present didn't seem to be well made; I think that if there were two parts, past and present separately, the storyline would have been clearer, specially for those who take a bit to read books.
Having said that, there were certainly good points about the book:
-the fact that the women are so different allows for the reader to relate to at least one of them;
-the setting is perfect, Paris seems to always be a good idea;
-it is a beautiful romance centered on the love and pain of a friendship and although it felt like it could be better explored, it was a beautiful read.
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Loved the idea of this book and its focus on female friendships but I just kept waiting for something big to happen…and it never did. The book was a very slow burn, to the point where I almost gave up on it a few time.
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This for me was a unique tale about friendship.

Three women who have essentially watched each other grown and evolve over the years suddenly find themselves you at a cross roads of sorts.

I loved that it was told from three points of view. It was interesting to see each characters thoughts on certain events, just how they differed from one another. These narrations made it more realistic as it is true in real life, we all perceive things in a variety of ways.

There were times throughout where I didn't feel as though I really liked any of them. Although they'd all experienced sadness and trauma, they also came across as quite selfish at times. This wasn't something that I disliked though, it was refreshing. We all love to hate certain characters don't we.

Kennedy has really worked hard to show the complexities of humans as a whole. Even better, these complications were shown over various time periods. Showing us that no matter how old we get, life really doesn't get simpler.

Not everything is black and white and some secrets and lies seem necessary at times (we've all hidden things for what we think is the greater good haven't we).

There are many subjects covered in this novel. From abortion and miscarriage to adultery and addiction. I was impressed as none of the above were simply glossed over. Each issue was treated as important and the reasons behind them also came across as honest and justified.

Over all, After Paris is filled with great emotions.

I admired its honesty.
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I enjoyed <i>After Paris</i> a lot more than I expected to. The major plot points aren't that different from a lot of the female friendship-centered books on the market right now, but I really like how Nicole Kennedy explores the breakdown of those friendships that tend to happen when people hit their 30s. The characters each have to work through their flaws and struggles while becoming more aware that everyone in their lives is going through something. 

Thank you, NetGalley, for the ARC of this book.
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This book touched on so many important concepts: female friendships, neurodiversity, substance abuse, addictions, and fidelity. The book’s characters seem totally normal—our friends and struggles. But it still transported me by taking me to Paris, walking along the Seine, eating croissants. I loved it.
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This is definitely one to read about friendships and how they can test you. Loved all the twists and turns and also the unexpected!
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Alice, Jules, and Nina meet, in rather dramatic fashion, at a debutante ball in Paris, and become fast friends. Over the decades they support each other through the adventures of adulthood--education and careers, romantic entanglements and marriage, pregnancy and child-rearing--and meet regularly for weekends in Paris. Until one weekend, when all three women are "off" and they cannot seem to connect as they once did. Alice is worried about having left her children, especially her autistic daughter, with her husband, and about her nascent career in interior design. Nina seems to have it all together, with her expanding empire of patisseries, but she is hiding the secret of a new pregnancy and is not sure how she feels about it. But, the one thing she knows is that she cannot tell Jules, who is deep in a world of IVF attempts and miscarriages. After two days, in which they fail to truly engage with one another, two of them leave the apartment suddenly and separately, in the early morning, leaving the third sitting alone at brunch and wondering what has happened. Their lack of connection and poor communication leads to months and months of no contact, as their worlds are thrown into upheaval. In these months "after Paris" they wonder about their friends and their friendship.. As I raced through this lively and engaging book, I wondered when they would actually talk to each other and get beyond these obstacles. This is a thoughtful story of female friendship, for better or worse. Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this ARC!
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Everyone should read this book, it really shows the boundaries of friendship between people, was glued to it from the first page, loved it ..
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Three women take the same Eurostar to Paris for a girls' trip, but take separate trains back. What happened that weekend? A thought-provoking and gripping novel about trying to hold on to friendships when you start to grow apart.  A story that takes a dark turn, has several surprises and kept me on my toes right up to the final page!
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With believable, relatable characters, this book is a unique and engrossing exploration of female friendships and the way they grow and change over time.
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First off I would like to thank NetGalley and Head of Zeus for providing me with this ARC. I have always wanted to visit Paris and this book made me want to visit more. The premise of the book is that 3 best friends take the same Eurostar to Paris for a girls' weekend, but take separate trains back. Now the reader is left with the challenge of what exactly happened that weekend. Well I won’t give that away lol. But I will tell you what I loved about the book. The storyline was hilarious and heartfelt. The characters could be felt off the pages. They seem so real but at the same you could see their defects. I also loved that each of the friends had their own problems that they were dealing with, which brought a new aspect to the book. I’m glad each character didn’t have the same problem. My only concern about the book was that it was hard to tell if it was in the past or the present. But despite that concern I still recommend this book!
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