Paris, California

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Pub Date 17 May 2023 | Archive Date 08 Jun 2023

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Description

Ashin Asilomar is a retired dentist, living in the same California mid-coastal town where he was raised, practiced, married, and widowed. A troubled young family moves in next door, and Ashin befriends their 12-year-old son, Mateo Funk. Together, Ashin and Mateo watch as more and more outsiders move in, calling the town perfect just as it is… And then working so very hard to transform Paris into the place they recently escaped. It begins with fences, signs, and dog leashes, but soon progresses to hostility, absurdity, and then madness.

Paris, California tells a tale familiar to many people who have watched their community transformed—by those who move in and then work to change the very characteristics that attracted them there in the first place—and what happens when that phenomenon goes completely off the rails.

Ashin Asilomar is a retired dentist, living in the same California mid-coastal town where he was raised, practiced, married, and widowed. A troubled young family moves in next door, and Ashin...


Advance Praise

The relationship built between a retiree and a young boy who needs distraction and guidance is truly fantastic. The mere fact that generational gaps still focus on right and wrong and a lot of 'why?' gives this a perfect jumping place.

The relationship built between a retiree and a young boy who needs distraction and guidance is truly fantastic. The mere fact that generational gaps still focus on right and wrong and a lot of 'why?'...


Available Editions

ISBN 9781645994091
PRICE $4.99 (USD)
PAGES 163

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Average rating from 11 members


Featured Reviews

Paris, California
by Kevin St. Jarre
Description
Ashin Asilomar is a retired dentist, living in the same California mid-coastal town where he was raised, practiced, married, and widowed. A troubled young family moves in next door, and Ashin befriends their 12-year-old son, Mateo Funk. Together, Ashin and Mateo watch as more and more outsiders move in, calling the town perfect just as it is… And then working so very hard to transform Paris into the place they recently escaped. It begins with fences, signs, and dog leashes, but soon progresses to hostility, absurdity, and then madness.
Paris, California tells a tale familiar to many people who have watched their community transformed—by those who move in and then work to change the very characteristics that attracted them there in the first place—and what happens when that phenomenon goes completely off the rails.
Another great read in February, Ashin Asilomar befriend a troubled Mateo a 12-year-old from a very troubled family next door. It is a very striking book. Paris, California is what so many places are becoming. Neighbors against neighbors, unaccepting and narrow-minded. It reminds me of my own town. Signs, signs..everywhere a sign. Yet the retired Ashin and Mateo cannot just look away. I love the way they both found someone to hold onto as every wrong, every rule brings them to trust.

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This delightful book about a retired dentist and his young friend who live in a small town in California is a sad commentary on urban sprawl. For decades, the town of Paris, CA has had an old-time feeling; generally, very little has changed until we get a little way into the story when, suddenly, it seems, the little town is transformed into not just a suburb, but a bustling metropolis where giant buildings and homes appear to spring up overnight, much to the dismay of our protagonists.

And, of course, new housing developments come with a whole host of problems not previously encountered, like dwindling public beach access and fences, each one higher and more fortified than the next. The town begins to feel like a fortress, with property values skyrocketing and original residents fleeing with over a million dollars in their pockets, but there is nowhere, even with that much cash, that they can afford to live.

The book is wickedly funny, very well written, and, while some of the players are caricatures, all of them are well developed. And, as I said earlier, it’s actually very sad to see things changing so rapidly that you don’t even recognize where you have lived for decades, something that happens all too often in our craving for more society.

Read this book and enjoy the story alone. Or read this story and see if you can relate to the conundrum of rapid change.

Highly recommended.

I look forward to reading more by this author.

I received this book as an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley.

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Entertaining satire. It may not be high literature, but this is a fun read, which reflects back some issue and flaws of society along with some humor.

Thanks very much for the free ARC for review!!

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This was a heavenly read, deliciously funny and full of relatable things that we all see now as we get older.

A book suitable for anyone who has lived somewhere that has started to change.

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I love novels that observe human behavior through a high magnification lens, especially when you don’t know you’re looking through one. Paris, California is one of those books that reminds us how small, seemingly benign actions can add up to catastrophe, and how we often don’t see it coming. The story is about ordinary people whose lives are turned upside down by outsiders who try to transform their dreamy town into a utopia—with tragic consequences. It’s a cautionary tale with a warmth and humility to it, thanks to Kevin St. Jarre’s insight and strong, natural writing. His characters are alive with flaws, and they get under your skin with their humorous observations and simmering grudges. Paris feels like a town you’ve lived in, where the rules and regulations are familiar, sometimes absurd, and the big players are followers, making it up as they go along. St. Jarre has written a poignant novel that successfully bridges the gap between drama and satire.

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Interesting story about a small town that is changing and how one resident feels about it. Ashin is a great main character. The town probably feels like most small towns nowadays when people come in and change everything they liked about the town in the first place.

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