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The Paris Hours


One day in the City of Light. One night in search of lost time.
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Discuss The Paris Hours by Alex George:
Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Created: 05/19/20

Replies: 19

Posted May. 19, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2245

Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?


Posted May. 22, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
terriej

Join Date: 07/28/11

Posts: 262

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I really liked Guillame's. I was surprised by some of the turns that it took.


Posted May. 23, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
momo

Join Date: 04/03/19

Posts: 17

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel

I think Jean Paul was my favorite because I empathized with him the most. I cannot imagine losing a child and a spouse. I think I would be on a forever search too, if I was in his situation.


Posted May. 23, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Tired Bookreader

Join Date: 08/19/11

Posts: 147

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I do not have a favorite. This question is like asking if you have a favorite child. Every person's story is unique and important...not one more so than another.


Posted May. 23, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
laurap

Join Date: 06/19/12

Posts: 291

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

While to some extent I agree with Tired Bookreader, , on reflection I think I lean toward Camille's story. I think her deception, while well-intentioned, was especially significant, and her discovery of her employer's betrayal (at the same time she was refusing to follow his directive) probably involved the most complex motivations among the four stories.


Posted May. 23, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
katherinep

Join Date: 07/16/14

Posts: 235

Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite?

I liked them all and empathized with each but I felt Souren's situation was hopeless, Camille was too dependent for me, and Guilliame, too immature. Jean-Paul was the one I found myself caring about the most and so, I guess, he was my favorite. He alone, it seemed, went on with his life in a meaningful way, though always hoping to find his lost child. He made choices that were carrying him forward in his life, knowing that you don't ever get over a loss as great as his, but that you can move on. When his book was destroyed he felt the loss yet again but he chose to get the book he had back to its rightful owner because it might be as meaningful to them as his had been to him--he saw beyond himself and his pain and he reached out.

Yes, he I liked, and I just hope he does not get to know that his daughter still lives and is in the home of someone else--he doesn't need this extra pain, nor do they and certainly Marie does not deserve the upheaval that will come to her.


Posted May. 23, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PinkLady

Join Date: 01/22/18

Posts: 91

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

If I must choose, I think my favorite was Souren mainly because of his story. Escaping and becoming a new person while creating a new life took a lot from him and for him to do. I felt him a bit more than the other three.


Posted May. 24, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
karenking

Join Date: 04/15/19

Posts: 14

Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite?

My favorite character was Souren, his backstory was so sad. But all four characters were interesting.


Posted May. 25, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Peggy H

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 267

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I find it hard to say which i liked best. Like the reader above i find it hard to select one, but I think Jean-Paul and his Search for his missing child. I felt his feelings were the most realistic.


Posted May. 25, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Mary Louise

Join Date: 04/15/16

Posts: 10

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I am torn between Souren and Jean-Paul. Souren's story touched me the most because it was the most tragic and my heart hurt for him in that he was never really able to live a happy, or even peaceful life. Only death was his release. But I really just loved Jean-Paul; and I was happy to know that, in some way, the loss of his daughter and wife was mitigated. The scene where he realizes the child he has convinced himself is his daughter is, in fact, not was so moving. One of the most beautiful sentences in this book full of beautiful sentences is "He looks down at the girl . . . His heart breaks into a million tiny pieces and then puts itself back together, reconfigured, a little larger than before." The resilience and survival of his human spirit is a triumph.


Posted May. 26, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
gerrieb

Join Date: 09/03/19

Posts: 46

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Souren was my favorite and my heart aches for him still. He was such a survivor and had overcome the most serious threats on his life. The story of his mother's dress, his fleeing alone, the story of Hector. It was heartbreaking that he had survived so much and denied so many who wanted him dead, to only dissolve in his own unbearable grief. I also liked Jean-Paul as he too was a survivor who was trying to move onward with his life while still trying to stay where his daughter could find him or he her. Camille was so self centered from the start and deceitful. She refused to destroy Proust's notebooks as he requested and thus her true crime was potentially exposed. Guillaume struck as a ne're-do-well. Someone immature obsessively looking to someone else to fulfill his dreams.I did like all the stories told together as it provides contrast and perspective and heightened my interest.


Posted May. 27, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kate

Join Date: 01/22/11

Posts: 66

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Souren and Jean Paul were most engaging to me. I found both of them to be sad from all their heartache but both gentle souls and still looked out for others. Both of them showed one can go thru great trauma, and still have hope. I was sad that Souren's headache proved too much for him in the end, but found it believable.


Posted May. 29, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jennie r

Join Date: 08/06/17

Posts: 44

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I liked all the characters for their own merits...all their stories were compelling. But, if prsssed, I’d choose Jean-Paul...he was almost sweetly melancholy, and evoked compassion rather than pity.


Posted May. 31, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
beckys

Join Date: 08/12/16

Posts: 63

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

I think Jean-Pauls story was the most poignant...the loss of a child and his search for her, and the disappointment that comes when he realized who he thought was his daughter, was not, was so moving to me. It really tugged at my heart strings. I did connect with each persons story though and loved how they were all so intertwined.


Posted Jun. 01, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
louisee

Join Date: 06/29/15

Posts: 118

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

My favorite character was Souren. He took such care with his puppets and his puppet show for the children in the park. He was so kind and then when I learned about his back story I was amazed he was able to go on and make a life for himself.


Posted Jun. 02, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Kathleen V

Join Date: 06/02/20

Posts: 14

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Camille's story was the most compelling to me, to the point that I almost considered skipping forward and reading only her parts first (blasphemy, I know! But I was truly captivated by her story.). I was fascinated by her motivations and her life, as well as the mystery of what was in the notebook.

Jean-Paul's story also really pulled me in. And I love how--SPOILER ALERT!--their two stories intersect at the end.


Posted Jun. 03, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
tswaine

Join Date: 09/14/11

Posts: 62

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

All the characters were very interesting! I liked them all!


Posted Jun. 03, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Muse48

Join Date: 12/27/18

Posts: 20

Favorite Character

I was drawn to Camille and her relationship with Marcel Proust because I am a writer myself and can understand his eccentricity and her devotion.


Posted Jun. 06, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Graham

Join Date: 04/21/20

Posts: 3

RE: Of the four interwoven storylines that comprise the novel--Souren's, Guillaume's, Jean-Paul's, and Camille's--did you have a favorite? If so, why?

Of the four characters I identified with Camille the most. Haven't we all taken some action that "came back to haunt us?" I know I have acted on impulse and later regretted that I didn't think through my actions. Why did she choose that volume to destroy? was it just chance or fate? will her long-ago action haunt her as her daughter grows up? Amazing how the PAST is never really gone!!


Posted Jun. 13, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
patriciag's Gravatar
patriciag

Join Date: 07/11/14

Posts: 32

Characters

I was especially moved by Souren's story--the tragedy of his past played out through his puppets juxtaposing such evil with what normally is a child's delight was very effective for me. But I should say that reading Camille's story prompted me to begin reading Remembrance of Things Past (for probably the tenth time). Maybe this time I'll succeed!!


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