A beautifully controlled and powerful story of love and conscience, will and desire which begins when a mysterious young girl arrives to take up a post at the seedy H-tel du Lion d'Or in a small French town in the mid-1930s. The Girl at the Lion d'Or is the first book in Sebastian Faulks' French trilogy of novel. Birdsong and Charlotte Gray are also available from Random House Audio Books, read by Samuel West.
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A modern classic
When I read my first Sebastien Faulks novel many moons ago, I remember waiting for a big event to happen or an incredibly unforeseen ending to occur and I felt mildly disappointed that this was not the case.
The beauty of a Faulks novel is that although there might not be an aforementioned 'surprise' in each chapter, his beautifully articulate use of English literature never fails to transport you to what you are reading.
In this book; during Each sentence, you will find yourself gently walking down the fictional path of post war Paris as a young lady starting a job at the Hotel De Lion' Dor. It is not suspenseful or action packed, but rather intriguing and lovely, undoubtedly a welcome change of pace from real life for me and many others I'm sure.
'Not Faulks' Best' is the title of many reviews on this book, but do not be fooled. In my opinion, It is as beautiful and magnificent as any of his previous novels.
A very decent listen
I have only tried to read Birdsong in the past a couple of times and not finished it. I thought I might struggle with Mr Foulkes as I didn't get on with Birdsong but I was impressed with the story-telling and the way the life of the main character was plucked out of a sea of milling lives in the city and given a spotlight. The characterisation was excellent and the story compelling.
The girl's impassioned plea not to be left by her lover. But this was memorable because it was the one point in the book where I felt that the author slightly lost control of the characterisation and may have suffered from being a man trying to understand the workings of a woman's mind.
I found his narration pleasantly neutral.
After the first couple of hours possibly yes.