Cover Image: The Paris Housekeeper

The Paris Housekeeper

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Member Reviews

Set during WW2, this story of 3 ladies is so carefully woven together. A rich woman, a housekeeper & a Jewish woman. A lot of time, duel point of view stories with more than 2 can be hard to follow, but this one was done perfectly. You never lost track of who was who and the story has me so engulfed. It got very intense towards the end, not knowing how it would turn out. Extremely good book.
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From the first sentence I could feel that I would enjoy reading this book. Once the characters are recognized I could imagine them and feel there thoughts and emotions. The nazi subject is not an easy subject and the author made it real and wrote with compassion. This book will be remembered for a long time. Recommend.
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I rated this book a 4/5. I thought this book was very well written and I loved the accuracy to the historical aspect. The author did a great job at placing you in the time period and truly making you feel what the characters of that time felt. Especially Rachel. I’ve always had an interest in reading about WW2 but I’ve obviously never understood what it felt like to be a Jew during this time. Reading from Rachel’s POV helped me to understand a little more and truly tore my heart up every time I read her perspective. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction or has an interest in WW2 history!
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     An interesting story that deals with the lives of people from different classes and how they struggle 
    with the every day events of the Nazi occupation of Paris in their lives. Brought together by 
    circumstances that fall into place, the wealthy widow conspires with the resistance by befriending     
    the ranking Nazi officer and leading many to safety. The final chapters rush forward to a positive 
    solution showing the many dangerous steps  people who care for others, will fight through to aid    
    those less fortunate. The housekeeper and the widow join in a series of events to save a couple 
    destined for untimely death.  A feel good ending through a long and difficult struggle. 

    I have received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed are completely my own.
    Four Stars

    Spencer Birt
    Sept 21, 2023
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Three women one an American with money to spare, a young French chambermaid and a young Jewish hotel maid whose lives intertwine as Paris is being taken over by Germany in 1941.

Vivian Miller the rich American lives at the Hotel Ritz.  Hiding from everyone what she is really doing in Paris.Camille Lacroix, who works at the hotel also acts as a lady's maid to Vivian for which Vivian pays Camille handsomely.  Then Vivian asks Camille to go out of her comfort zone and hatred for the Germans to help her with a plan concerning the Germans. Not knowing what Vivian is planning Camille agrees because she needs the money for her family, mainly her sister .  She will help Vivian under on condition, help her friend Rachel..  Rachel Berman is a Jewish girl as her superior would call her who also works at the hotel.  She and Camille has a friendship that helps her get through some of the backlash of the hatred of the Jewish people.  That is until it doesn't and Rachel finds herself alone except for her mother who is mourning the arrest of her husband and son and her sister.  What is to happen to what is left of the Berman family? That is when Camille turns to Vivian for help.  Can she trust her? Is she really doing something good with the money she has left, or is Vivian siding with the Germans?

Renee Ryan wrote three of the strongest  characters I have read about in a long time.  Each women had some struggle to overcome.  To me Rachel the most because of not knowing what happened to her father and brother ,and also not knowing what will happen to her and the rest of her family.  What I think really hits Rachel hard is that she thought Camille was a friend.  A friend to turn to not to be betrayed by.  

What a powerful story about one of the most horrific times in our lives.  Shown through the eyes of three different women and what they had to do to get through it all.  Vivian who was trying to do good for others and yet you feel she was betraying others.  Camille who wanted to do right by her family, yet had to sacrifice what she believed in to do so.  Then poor Rachel who had to suffer the horrors of a crazy nation to tear apart what she held so dear to her.  How will they survive this nightmare.  Gripping story with strong characters, heartbreaking decisions to be made with suspense, love and hatred.  I couldn't put it down.

Thank you Harlequin Romance, NetGalley for the ARC copy of this gripping story.  Thank you Renee Ryan for a true heart tearing story that everyone should read.
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As German tanks move into Paris three woman know their lives have changed course. But where this new course will lead remains to be seen. 
Vivian, a wealthy American will stay in Paris and try and use her funds to save as many people as she can. Camille is sending every penny she can home to care for her family. Rachel fears her family will not survive once the new regime implements the laws that were already enacted in Germany and Poland. 
I really enjoyed reading all of the woman’s stories but Camille really embodies the idea of an ordinary person just doing what they can to help others in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. Rachel loves her family so much and can see the writing on the wall but she refuses to abandon them, her strength is amazing. And Vivian is trying her best to stay one step ahead of the enemy while maintaining her own self. 
I definitely enjoyed this book, and I always read the author notes when I finish a book like this. I was so excited that for once I knew the source material referenced as inspiration! In My Hands:The Story Of a Holocaust Survivor is one of the few non fiction/memoirs I have read. I read it as a teenager and loved it and is one of the books I credit with beginning a lifelong desire to know everything I can about what happened. 
A massive thank you to @reneeryanbooks and @netgalley and @harlequinbooks for letting me review this novel. 
#bookstagram #bookreview #bookrecommendations #bookrecommendation #readforjoy #readersofinstagram #theparishousekeeper #ww2 #historicalfiction #fictionbooks #booklovers #readersofinstagram #readreadread
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Well written and full of realistic and relatable characters. I liked that much of it showed how gray circumstances and scenarios were during the war. While there was plenty that was black and white, right and wrong, there was still more that was ambiguous and blurred. Betrayal vs Sacrifice really was a great theme. 

I liked Camille so much and I even respected Vivian in her flaws, as much as I very often didn’t want to. I thought her character provided a great opportunity to evaluate what you would do in her position when it’s not so cut and dry. And I thought Rachel was well painted in her struggle with constant fear and anger at her situation. 

Thanks to Netgalley for the advanced copy of this book. All opinions are mine.
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Thank you to Net Galley for providing an early copy of The Paris Housekeeper by Renee Ryan

     Vivian Miller, Camille Lacroix and Rachel Berman face the occupation of Paris by the Nazis in different ways that will merge in a riveting climax of death and redemption.

     Vivian Miller is a wealthy American widow using her considerable connections to secure exit papers for Jews desperate to leave Paris; Camille Lacroix is the very attractive maid at the Hotel Ritz whose past has put her in the never-ending quest to provide for her family; Rachel Berman faces the daily horrors of watching her fellow Jews fall to the inhuman policies of the Nazis in occupied France.  When Vivian makes the distasteful decision to become the mistress of a high-ranking Nazi, the turn of events will place all three women in great danger while offering a temporary safe haven.

     Paris housekeeper Camille who hides Rachel and her mother in a bunker under the Nazi's home is based on a real woman In Paris during the Second World War..  In addition, Coco Chanel (Nazi collaborator) and Shelomo Selinger (sculptor and survivor of the death camps and still alive) make appearances in this richly-detailed story of ways the most ordinary of people can make a difference against a mighty oppressor.
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This fast-paced historical novel takes place in Paris in 1942 during the Hitler regime. Set in the iconic Ritz hotel, and then in Dancey, France, one sees what life was like for the Jews of Paris. What lengths will a wealthy woman and a poor housekeeper go to, in order to save many or just one? Friendship comes in many different packages, and this author has woven a wonderful tale. Highly recommended.
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A compelling novel set in WW2 France. 
History comes alive through the storyline of three women from distinct backgrounds whose lives intersect in Paris during the German Occupation.
The tension builds as the danger grows and the characters make difficult choices. It reminded me of a spy movie, especially in Vivian's case with the sacrifices she made to help others. The exciting ending was worth the wait and was quite moving. It is a tribute to the courage and fortitude of many unsung heroes as it is partly based on real people. 
There is a mature adult situation, but not detailed. Mentions of the Jewish Holocaust and the prejudice of the time are gently handled and are important aspects of the story.
Recommend to mature readers who enjoy wartime tales. 4 stars
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I received a free e-arc of this book through Netgalley. 
I adored this book and had such a hard time putting it down. Camille, Yvonne, and Rachel are all women of vastly different backgrounds and means who come together during WWII in Paris to fight the Nazis and try to survive. If you like WWII historical fiction, then give this one a try.
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The Paris Housekeeper is a story which takes place during the Nazi occupation of Paris and is told in three distinct voices - French, Aryan-looking Camille, who is a maid at the Ritz Hotel and must earn money to care for her younger sister who is mentally ill, Jewish Rachel who also works at the Ritz for a while and whose successful father makes the incorrect decision to keep the family in Paris and Rachel suffers persecution, and wealthy Amerian widow Vivian, who remains in Paris and is willing to do anything (even sacrifice her own safety) to try to help Jews escape the Nazis. The story is well written and at times, I could not put it down, while at other times it was difficult to read. It did offer the happy ending I love so much. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
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What a wonderful book. So well written I had chills reading it. What people went through during the Holocaust.! The people who lived through it didn’t know who to trust. There were some good and heroic people who helped the Jews even I though it cost them the ultimate price. This book will live inside me for a very long time!
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In "The Paris Housekeeper" by Renee Ryan, readers are treated to an exquisite blend of romance, intrigue, and a lush Parisian backdrop that comes alive on every page. This is a heartbreaking novel of resilience and friendship. It is a reminder of the strength of women and the bonds that can exist between women that only strengthen in times of trial.

One of the standout strengths of "The Paris Housekeeper" is its well-drawn characters, each with their own distinct personalities and hidden layers. Ryan's meticulous attention to historical detail immerses readers in the sights, sounds, and emotions of the era, creating an atmospheric experience that adds depth to the narrative.
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The story of 3 women - one American heiress, a French housekeeper and a young Jew, during the Nazi occupation of Paris.
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This was a stunning book . Camille , Rachel and Vivian’s stories were woven together beautifully. It made me keep reading and wanting to know what happened next .

Camille is a French girl who struggles with the impact she has made years ago on her younger sister . Her sister struggles with what we’d most likely label as PTSD. Camille works extra hours and extra  jobs at the hotel she works at in order to fund her sisters care .  She meets Rachel who is another chambermaid at the hotel . Rachel is different though - she is Jewish. No one likes her or is kind to her :except Camille. Vivian is an American heiress living at the hotel Camille and Rachel work at. She is carefree living the best life she can while missing her deceased husband . All three women’s story changes when the German come to Paris and take over the town and the  hotel . 
Vivian has to decide whether she will become the mistress of a cruel , harsh Nazi member . Will she become his mistress and help save individual Jews or go home to the United States ?
Camille chooses to become a housekeeper in a Nazi’s home and ultimately saves Rachel’s and her mothers lives. 
This story is about how many things are not black and white . Many choices are made that may be different than what they appear. Many impact others with no acknowledgment: no credit .
This story was a beautiful , haunting story. It brought me to tears . 
Thank you to Netgalley for a copy in exchange for an unbiased review.
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The Paris Housekeeper
Maybe I have read too many books of Paris after the German invasion during World War II, or this novel was just too slow for me. 
I was dragging through at least the first two thirds of the book, with not a lot happening, just repeating the three protagonist’s plight. Vivian, the rich American widow living in the Ritz hotel in Paris, and two housekeepers, Jewish Rachel and Camille. Each of their lives are uprooted after the Nazi invasion. The book does pick up towards the end, but overall this was only a three star book for me.
I received a complimentary copy, opinions are my own.
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Ebook received for free through NetGalley

A heart wrenching and incredible story that grabbed me from the start. Written really well.
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The Paris Housekeeper by Renee Ryan is a page turned historical fiction.  It is about the plight of the Jews in Nazi occupied Paris during the second world war. Vivian is a rich American citizen who has stayed in Paris to help get as many Jews, and people the Nazi’s feel are undesirable, out of the country. Camille is a maid at the Ritz where the Nazi’s are living. She is working to support her family, especially her sister who is in a mental facility as a result of witnessing their father commit suicide. Rachel and her family are Jewish. 

The story brings together these three women and tells of how Vivian and Camille fight to get Rachael and her mother out of France. They hide them right under the Nazi’s nose. The story is definitely heart stopping at times and keeps you in suspense at others. The writing is excellent and explains how these people were wronged. There were times when you dreaded the outcome but continued because you had to know. I could not put this book down. 

I thank Net Galley for giving me the opportunity to read this pre-release. The book will be available for purchase in December 2023.
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I’m a professional history nerd and a small facet of my job is talking about American women’s experiences during World War II. I was so excited for the chance to read “The Paris Housekeeper” by Renee Ryan and read about the fictional experiences of three very different women in Paris during the German occupation. 

When Germany seized control of Paris in June 1941, not everyone was able to escape. People like Camille Lacroix, employed at the Hôtel Ritz, could not afford to leave behind a job that supports her windowed mother and sisters. Desperate to provide for them, Camille takes up work as a lady’s maid for the hotel guest Vivian Miller. 

Vivian is a beautiful and fabulously wealthy American widow…and a Nazi sympathizer. Camille doesn’t trust her, but has no choice but to turn to Vivian for help getting her friend Rachel Berman out of the city. For Vivian has been using her money and connections to obtain forged travel papers for Jewish refugees and agrees to help Rachel. 

As Nazi control grows, Rachel and her mother are in increasing danger, motivating Camille to hide the two women in a secret underground bunker right under the nose of a Nazi officer. But the women know that time is running out and Rachel and her mother need to get out before it’s too late. 

“The Paris Housekeeper” was a stressful tale of three very different women trying to navigate life in 1940s Paris during the Nazi occupation. The women’s stories intersect at multiple times and their fates become irrevocably entwined as they try to help one of them—a woman of Jewish heritage—escape France with her mother. 

Ryan wove an interesting story and utilized real people and events to influence her characters. The character of Camille, who is the housekeeper referenced in the book’s title, is the most fleshed out of the three women we see. She left behind her family and her guilt for a better paying job at the Hôtel Ritz. We see her thoughts are constantly about her family and quickly about Rachel and what she could do to protect them from the Nazis. Camille is faced with many difficult and dangerous decisions but puts her fear aside to do what she thinks is right. 

Rachel Berman is the most interesting character of the book. She goes through the most in the book, seeing the men in her neighborhood arrested and sent away shortly after the occupation began and increasingly fearing for her mother and herself. Ryan portrayed Rachel as very angry through the book, which I thought was a great choice because it gave her more agency. She was mad at her family for not seeing the writing on the wall when the German Army was approaching France, furious that they wouldn’t leave their home but powerless to do anything. She was upset about the deteriorating conditions at work and the poor treatment by her coworkers and neighbors. She was also angry at Camille, because Rachel needed to rely on her help to escape. And most of all, Rachel was angry that there was nothing she could do herself. A lot of fictional stories that incorporate Jewish people during World War II paint them as resigned and fearful, but they were not one-dimensional and should not be portrayed as such. 

Arguably the least interesting character was Vivian Miller. She became the mistress of a Nazi officer in order to continue her work of gathering forged travel documents for Jewish refugees and sometimes expressed her hatred of him and her actions and sometimes seemed complacent. While this could have been a fascinating decision on Ryan’s part, having Vivian struggle with her morals or even begin to suffer from a sort of Stockholm Syndrome, it comes across instead that the author was too wishy-washy with the character and didn’t fully develop her character. 

In all, “The Paris Housekeeper” was a well written fictional story inspired by true events. It was tense and stressful—as it should be given the topic—but also filled with quiet, heartfelt moments. Ryan balanced the multiple POVs of the three female leads well and developed several interesting characters. 

A note on a historical inaccuracy that I’m probably the only person to be bothered by: Vivian makes a few comments about her experiences in World War I with the Red Cross. She makes a point to specify that she was a “combat nurse,” but those did not exist in either World War I or World War II. The War Department refused to allow women to be classified as combatants of any kind during either war. I suppose it’s possible she served as a “combat nurse” with another country’s Red Cross, but that wasn’t really a term used by any nation as far as I’m aware. It is also clearly established that she’s an American, so this further seems unlikely. Vivian’s experiences would still read the same if she referred to herself as a nurse and it would be historically correct.
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