Book review: The Paper Palace
Some books don't let you go. The Paper Palace is one of those books. From the first lines through the author's acknowledgements, this book had me completely immersed in Elle’s world and life.
This is the first of what I plan to be many romance novel (and love story) reviews on this blog, because in addition to writing, I love-love-love to read.
Some books don't let you go. The Paper Palace is one of those books. I read most of it in a single day, a similar timeline to the current-day events in the story. Seventy-two (plus-plus) hours after finishing it, I'm still thinking about it. In a good way. It's not a romance; as the internet will tell you,
Spoiler alert 🤐 (click down arrow to read)
there is no unambiguous HEA (happily ever after).
I would call it a love story. Which is fitting, IMO – I fell hard.
From the first lines through the author's acknowledgements, this story had me completely immersed in Elle’s world and life. Not that every scene was easy to read – many weren't, for different reasons – but immersed I was. The kettle ponds of the Cape, the creaking cabin steps, the mossy bank by the spring. The violence and disappointment, the heartbreak and shame, the soul-binding chemistry, the beauty.
And let's not neglect to mention the sexy (if illicit), pitch-perfect scene at the beach tent.
I suspected partway through that The Paper Palace might end with ambiguity, but I do think Elle's decision at the very end of the story was clear. I say "very end" because I believe she made a decision...
while at the barbeque and, afterward, cleaning up the raccoons' mess
...and then at daybreak made a different choice.
I read the ebook version of the book and, although I tend not to read a book twice or listen to audiobooks (I’m too easily distracted), I will listen to this one. I want to hear the words spoken aloud. The writing is sublime—lyrical and evocative.
The Paper Palace reminded me why, and just how much, I love to read. Overall, in a word, stunning. Thank you, Miranda Cowley Heller.
Review note: I purchased this title. All opinions my own.
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