The Paris Notebook
by Tessa Harris
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Pub Date 05 Dec 2023 | Archive Date 26 Dec 2023
Harper 360, HQ Digital
‘So many twists and turns and I certainly didn’t predict the ending. Five stars from me, I highly recommend this book.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
A secret big enough to destroy the Führer’s reputation. . .
When Katja Heinz secures a job as a typist at Doctor Viktor’s clinic, she doesn’t expect to be copying top secret medical records from a notebook.
At the end of the first world war, Doctor Viktor treated soldiers for psychological disorders. One of the patients was none other than Adolf Hitler. . .
The notes in his possession declare Hitler unfit for office – a secret that could destroy the Führer’s reputation, and change the course of the war if exposed. . .
With the notebook hidden in her hat box, Katja and Doctor Viktor travel to Paris. Seeking refuge in the Shakespeare and Company bookshop, they hope to find a publisher brave enough to print the controversial script.
But Katja is being watched. Nazi spies in Paris have discovered her plan. They will stop at nothing to destroy the notebook and silence those who know of the secret hidden inside. . .Readers LOVE The Paris Notebook!
‘An amazing story set during World War Two. Beautifully written characters you fall in love with from the very first page.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A mix of danger, suspense, mystery, romance and heartbreaking choices make for a story I would definitely recommend.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A unique historical fiction story that stands out from other books in the genre.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A bold, strong story and one that drew me in from the start. It is emotional, unique, fast paced, intriguing, engrossing and a book I just couldn't put down!’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘A wonderfully written, lovely paced book. I read late into the night, couldn't wait to see what happened.’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
‘Loved this book. It was filled from the first page to last with action and surprises!’ NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 28 members
This was my first time reading Tessa Harris, and one thing that really stood out for me is the fact that she must have done extensive research while writing this book. (It’s kind of easy to spot which authors have done actual research for historical novels and those who rely on Wikipedia to fill in the blanks). I love coming away from a book having learned something, and that’s what happened with The Paris Notebook. I learned several new things about Hitler and the Nazi party that I haven’t read anywhere else. Although it took me a bit to really get into the story, and there were parts that seemed to drag a bit, I really enjoyed it, and I would recommend it to everyone, especially those who enjoy historical romance. I look forward to reading more from this author in the future.
A fantastic WWII novel that is unputdownable. Authentic details and superb writing raise this book above the rest. A strong, unique heroine, touching romance, but the most excellent part is just how unique and interesting the plot is. I have read a lot of WWII fiction, and Tessa Harris breathed new life into the genre with this one! I really enjoyed it and am going to read whatever Tessa Harris decides to write!
What a gem of a story! I saw the title as a suggestion and sensed I made the right choice. I often read books that contain different aspects and angles of World War II resistance. This story, based on true events, opened my eyes to yet another point of view. The atrocities and those who fought against it, the heartbreak war brings, became part of this story of family and friends, grief and loss, but the tenacity helped overcome the pain to fight for justice. The author made my skin crawl, my heartbreak, and my body tense as we travel the roads with Dr. Viktor’s precious documents. This one will be worth staying up through the wee hours of the morning, as I did!
The Paris Notebook follows a young woman named Katja who, through a botched job interview, becomes the transcriptionist of Hitler's medical records and all the danger, struggle and sacrifice that it brings.
I thoroughly enjoyed the novel! The story flowed well, the characters and dilemmas believable and placed within historical events. I thought the wrap up to end a little anticlimactic but it still had a wonderful end!
A great read for anyone who enjoys WWll historical fiction or suspenseful reading!
The Paris Notebook tells the story of a German Psychiatrist, Dr Vicktor who treated a lance corporal after the soldiers exposure to poisonous gas during WWI. The lance corporal, Adolph Hitler was diagnosed with hysterical blindness resulting from anxiety. Dr Viktor, helped Hitler work through that and subsequently experienced tremendous remorse. By 1939 in Hamburg Germany, Dr Vicktor's patient notes were a dangerous threat to both Hitler and himself.
Dr Viktor hires Katja Heinz as his personal assistant to type Adolph Hitlers patient notes so that he may give the transcript to a publisher who will tell the world about Adolph Hitler before his power is absolute. Katja's father, a professor of anthropology, was murdered by the SS due to his attempt to warn Germans that what was happening in Germany under Hitler was not a good change. Katja, upon figuring out who the patient was, is only too happy to commit to the project.
Several attempts to contact publishers occur, trips from Germany to Paris and finally a daring escape and rescue of British troops through an active battle in Calais ensue with the intent to bring this information regarding Hitler to the attention of the Commanders of the The Allied Coalition and the United States.
The book contains beautiful descriptions of booksellers along the Seine (The Bouguinistes of Paris), an array of famous authors living in Paris in the late 1930's and a peek into the famous Paris bookstore, Shakespeare & Company founded by American Sylvia Beach. The premise of Hilter being treated during WWI is factual, this was not something of which I had been aware.
This is the first book I've read by Tessa Harris but it certainly won't be the last. Thank you to NetGalley for providing this book for me to read and review.
I was hooked from the prologue and devoured this book in two sittings. I enjoyed the fast pace which is not all that common in historical fiction books of ww2 era. The ending got a tad far fetched for me, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the book and would highly recommend to readers that enjoy historical fiction and suspense. Solid 4.5 stars for me.
Thank you NetGalley and Harper 360 for sending this book for review consideration. All opinions are my own.
The Paris Notebook is a unique twist on the dime-a-dozen World War 2 novels that have become so ubiquitous the past decade. Don't get me wrong, many of them are marvelous books. But so many share the same general plot. This is a fresh idea, and superbly written.
Katja is a typist for Doctor Viktor's office. When she comes across some of the psychological records of a young man treated after the Great War, and watches in horror as he continues gaining political power. She and the doctor decide the public needs to be aware of his mental health issues, but Nazi Germany will do anything to stop them from publishing his records.
Beautifully written, yet bone chilling, this will have you turning pages late at night until you come to the wonderfully-told end of this story. Fantastic, fresh, and frightening! ❤️❤️❤️
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the eARC in exchange for an honest review!
One of the most riveting historical fiction novels I've ever read, The Paris Notebook had me on the edge of my seat! By the time I reached the halfway point of this novel I couldn't put it down and all other daily tasks had to take a back seat. I simply HAD to know what was going to happen next.
Author Tessa Harris does a masterful job of combining suspenseful action with tragedy and a touch of romance so readers aren't too distraught throughout! It is very well paced featuring believable characters that your heart just bleeds for. Their trials, tribulations and relationships kept me engaged until the very end. There is never a dull moment, and the twists and turns along the way just seem to keep coming!
A gripping novel that I undoubtedly will return to over the years in amongst my recommendations to friends and colleagues to give it a read!
Tessa Harris does a great job in creating this historical novel, the use of World War 2 was really well done and I was invested in the twists of this novel. The characters felt like they belonged in this universe and I enjoyed the romance aspect of this book.
It’s been a while since I’ve read a historical fiction novel like this one, but I am so glad I read The Paris Notebook. This is a wonderful blend of soft and lovely romance, tragedy and heartbreak, and the dangers and sacrifice of war and political unrest. Taking on a topic such as an “exposure” of Hitler’s mental state is very tricky because there’s a risk of simplifying this time in history, or of making the main characters too individually heroic. However, the fate of the papers and the way the focus remained on Katja and Daniel’s own journey helped the story to avoid this. The stakes felt high enough without romanticizing the resistance effort to Hitler’s regime, which I really appreciated. By the end of the book, I was crying both from shock and sadness, and then happiness later. The characters are beautifully written and their affection flies off the page. Thank you so much for the advance copy!
Thank you net galley for the advance reader copy of this novel. This was a historical WWII fiction with a unique premise of Hitlers medical records being released. I enjoyed this novel although it was a little slow to start.
The Paris Notebook, written by Tessa Harris, is a gripping, compelling, and beautifully crafted read.
What would you risk to get Hitler's psychiatric and medical records out of Germany at the beginning of the war? Can it be published? How can it get into the proper hands to alert the world to Hitler's madness? When Katja goes to work for Dr. Victor, her mail job is to transcribe his notes from the time when he was Hitler's doctor. The Paris Notebook, by Tessa Harr tells the harrowing story of the attempts of Dr. Victor, Katja, and their friends to get this notebook to the right people. It takes you from Hamburg to Paris to Calais to England and back to Paris. It was an interesting read. I was able to read an ARC on #NetGalley.
The Paris Notebook was such a gripping, suspenseful read. The beginning was a little slow, but I understand that the author had to set up everything just so in order to weave her tale in just a compelling way. Way to go Tessa Harris.
I was lucky to receive a copy through NetGalley for an honest review
Thank you NetGalley for the ARC of The Paris Notebook!
This was one of my favorite books I’ve read recently. I loved the main character, Katja, and her story. The author did a great job with her character growth. I also really enjoyed Daniel, and how he grew and changed throughout the book.
This book kept my attention 100%. I was lost in it, didn’t even realize how late I stayed up reading it!
Spoiler alert ahead*
The only thing that kept it from being a 5-star read: the initial relationship between Daniel and Katja was rushed. I wanted to see more of the “connection” they kept talking about. Just a little more realism there.
Other than that though — I have no complaints. Really enjoyed this book!!
Katja Heinz works for Dr. Viktor as his assistant a typist at a mental health clinic in Germany on the cusp of WWII. She is typing the doctor’s personal notes about a soldier he treated near the end of WWI who had gone blind but there was no medical reason for the blindness. That soldier was Adolf Hitler.
The author takes a small amount of historical fact and gives us a fascinating story around it, with a fascinating ending.
Would be good for discussion groups that enjoy historical fiction. What would have happened if the world had known of Hitler’s mental health challenges and inability to be an effective soldier?
"The Paris Notebook" by Tessa Harris is a riveting tale set against the backdrop of post-World War I Europe. Katja Heinz's unexpected journey as a typist takes a thrilling turn when she stumbles upon a secret notebook containing damning information about Adolf Hitler's psychological fitness. As she and Doctor Viktor embark on a perilous journey to Paris, the stakes escalate, weaving a suspenseful narrative of espionage and the quest for truth.
Harris skillfully captures the tension of wartime Paris, making this historical thriller a gripping read that explores the impact of a hidden secret on the course of history.
In 1940, Katja is fortunate to land a job as a typist for psychiatrist Dr. Viktor, in Hamburg. The Nazis have come to power, but a document that Katja is typing could threaten their rule. In WWI, Dr. Viktor helped a young Adolph Hitler overcome a case of hysterical blindness, and his notes document just how unstable the man is. Katja and the doctor hope to smuggle the notes to Paris and get them published.
But Hitler recognizes Dr. Viktor in a crowd, and becomes obsessed with retrieving his medical files. Murders, sabotage, and courageous acts of rebellion ensue.
I loved the twist at the end!
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley and am voluntarily posting a review.
While I often balk at books about World War II, especially Germany, I was drawn to the concept of The Paris Notebook, especially the angle it took, exploring the danger posed by the existence of notebooks documenting Hitler’s psychiatric treatment in the aftermath of a gas attack after World War I. I was drawn into the sections about the notebooks themselves, how it highlighted Hitler’s broken state during that period, and how the doctor unintentionally set Hitler on his megalomaniac path toward power, certain of his godlike status.
Katja makes a compelling protagonist to observe most of the action through, being a personal assistant to the aforementioned doctor, Dr. Viktor. She is initially unsure exactly the secrets Dr. Viktor carries, and observing her natural reaction first to Hitler’s tendencies, and slowly coming to the realization who he is, is truly poignant and terrifying.
The intrigue in the story builds slowly, with the narrative initially split between Katja and Dr. Viktor in Hamburg, and subtly connects to their contacts in Paris, namely Daniel, with the connections becoming more prominent as the story goes on. Having previously read about the Shakespeare and Company bookstore in Paris, I was excited for that tie to the narrative, with the struggle to get the notebook published and expose Hitler’s past.
The two narratives do take their time to build, so the book was slow at first, but picked up over time. It was fairly well paced and packed in a lot, considering the book isn’t particularly long.
This was a satisfying read, and I enjoyed how it highlighted somewhat lesser known bits of World War II in Europe. If that also interests you, I’d recommend checking this book out!
Katja Heinz was a single woman living with her mother taking care of all of her needs and trying to pay the bills. She lands a job with Dr. Viktor at his clinic. He asks her to type his manuscript that he had kept for many years hidden about a troubled teenager, who not only was troubled, but had evil thoughts about being very powerful. The patient turned out to be Hitler. The doctors mission is to get this published and Katja believes she can help him.
This book had me captivated from page one; the story of Katja Heinz and Doctor Viktor, attempting to get this very important manuscript published had me breathless at times. I almost felt like I was standing in the room, listening to their whispered conversations.
I love the characters they were so well developed. I loved how passionate they were about this mission that they had set out to accomplish.
Thank you NetGalley or allowing me access to read this book.
rom page one - this is a perfect WWII feminist feeling novel! I've read so many stories about women's roles in history, and none of them felt quite as high stakes! Katja's heroism jumps off every page!
**Thank you to Harper 360, HQ Digitalw & NetGalley for the advanced reader copy. I received this book for free, but all thoughts are my own. – SLR 🖤