The dramatic story of how a humble bookseller fought against incredible odds to bring one of the most important books of the 20th century to the world in this new novel from the author of The Girl in...Read More
The dramatic story of how a humble bookseller fought against incredible odds to bring one of the most important books of the 20th century to the world in this new novel from the author of The Girl in White Gloves.
When bookish young American Sylvia Beach opens Shakespeare and Company on a quiet street in Paris in 1919, she has no idea that she and her new bookstore will change the course of literature itself.
Shakespeare and Company is more than a bookstore and lending library: Many of the prominent writers of the Lost Generation, like Ernest Hemingway, consider it a second home. It's where some of the most important literary friendships of the twentieth century are forged - none more so than the one between Irish writer James Joyce and Sylvia herself. When Joyce's controversial novel Ulysses is banned, Beach takes a massive risk and publishes it under the auspices of Shakespeare and Company.
But the success and notoriety of publishing the most infamous and influential book of the century comes with steep costs. The future of her beloved store itself is threatened when Ulysses' success brings other publishers to woo Joyce away. Her most cherished relationships are put to the test as Paris is plunged deeper into the Depression and many expatriate friends return to America. As she faces painful personal and financial crises, Sylvia - a woman who has made it her mission to honor the life-changing impact of books - must decide what Shakespeare and Company truly means to her.
Kerri Maher is the author of The Girl in White Gloves, The Kennedy Debutante, and, under the name Kerri Majors, This Is Not a Writing Manual: Notes for the Young Writer in the Real World. She holds an MFA from Columbia University and was a writing professor for many years. She now writes full-time and lives with her daughter and dog in a leafy suburb west of Boston, Massachusetts.
"A beautiful ode to Sylvia Beach, the renowned Shakespeare and Company owner, a real-life heroine who has left her mark on us all." - Marie Benedict, New York Times bestselling coauthor of The Personal Librarian
"If you ever dreamed you could transport yourself to Paris in the twenties, to Sylvia Beach's famous bookstore, Shakespeare and Company, where Joyce, Hemingway, and Pound wandered the aisles, this story's for you. Maher's magical touch brings to life a woman whose struggles resonate in today's world, while also examining the intricacies of friendship, fortitude, and the love of the written word." - Fiona Davis, New York Times bestselling author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue
"The Paris Bookseller is a novel I long to live in, a vivid evocation of the famous female-owned Parisian bookshop Shakespeare and Company which acted as haven and home to the literati of pre-WWII Europe. Heroine and shop owner Sylvia Beach shepherds seemingly all of the great writers of the 20th century with an appealing blend of warmth, wit, frustration, and understanding. Kerri Maher writes a love letter to books, bookstores, and booklovers everywhere." - Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Rose Code
"A story about Paris and bookshops was bound to find a place in my heart but this one has the pièce de résistance: the character of Sylvia Beach. I was completely enthralled by Beach's life and her tenacity in founding the first English-language bookshop in Paris, while also publishing James Joyce's epic but controversial Ulysses. With an abundance of delightful cameos from all of your favourite literary heroes as well as a fascinating rendering of Paris's glory days during the 1920s and 30s, this novel will transport you as only the best historical fiction can." - Natasha Lester, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Secret
"Midnight in Paris meets A Moveable Feast in this intimate, in-depth look at the brave and visionary woman who founded one of the world's most iconic bookstores, Shakespeare & Company, on Paris's Left Bank. Studded with appearances from the likes of James Joyce, Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, and Ernest Hemingway, The Paris Bookseller brings alive not only interwar Paris, but also the complicated friendship that led to the publication of Joyce's epic Ulysses and helped pave the way for Paris's enduring English-language literary legacy. If you've ever fallen in love with a bookstore, you'll love this ode to booksellers and to the power and magic of the written word." - Kristin Harmel, New York Times bestselling author of The Forest of Vanishing Stars
"The Paris Bookseller is a beautifully written homage to those who keep literature alive and to the quirky inhabitants of the literary community whose work sometimes transcends their personal failings. With an open heart and vivid prose, Maher brings to life a lost age and I can't wait to see what this talented author will tackle next." - Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of The Women of Chateau Layfayette
"In her latest, Maher throws open a window to 1920s Paris and the Lost Generation, dropping readers into the fascinating true story of one woman's fight to save a masterpiece. Maher weaves a tale that is atmospheric, heartfelt, and brimming with life, leaving no doubt a novel is a living, breathing thing." - Michelle Gable, New York Times bestselling author of A Paris Apartment and The Bookseller's Secret
"This compelling biographical novel perfect for lit lovers follows Sylvia Beach and the founding of bookstore Shakespeare and Company in Paris.... Come for the love of books and Sapphic passion and stay for the frequent cameos by the likes of Ezra Pound and Ernest Hemingway." - BuzzFeed Books
"A fine tribute to a tireless and selfless champion of literary genius." - Kirkus
"In a novel exuberant, bittersweet, and reflective by turns, Maher explores the life of Sylvia Beach...readers will emerge with sincere appreciation for the artistic spirit and courage of a remarkable woman." - Historical Novel Society