From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
Set mostly in Paris and intertwining two main voices, this sweet confection by best-selling Colgan (Amanda's Wedding, 2001) is heartwarming and funny. Anna Trent is 30 when she is bizarrely injured at her job in a chocolate factory in the north of England. Her difficult hospital recovery is only brightened by the unexpected presence of her high-school French teacher, Claire, who harbors memories of the path not taken in her youth. Recognizing in Anna a kindred spirit who needs prodding to fully embrace life, Claire suggests Anna take a job with a renowned chocolatier in Paris, the larger-than-life Thierry Girard. Anna travels to Paris and discovers an eye-opening world. As Anna alternately stumbles and soars through her new days, her story unfolds alongside Claire's, who had her own Parisian adventure in 1972. Romantic love and loss outline each character's story as she painfully yet fully grows from her experiences. Delightful and compassionate, this will resonate with readers of women's fiction. Chocolate recipes from the author, listed in the back of the book, add to its charm.--Trevelyan, Julie Copyright 2010 Booklist
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Parallel love stories play out in Paris a generation apart in this funny, lyrical story from U.K.-based chick-lit writer Colgan (Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe), about striving for perfection-and forgiveness. Anna Trent and her former French teacher, Claire Shawcourt, reconnect at the hospital where Anna is recovering from a bizarre industrial accident-a spill at the chocolate factory where she works, which has left her missing two of her toes. The cancer-stricken Claire, meanwhile, is being administered chemotherapy. The women bond over their shared pain, and Claire, inspired by the life-changing trip she took to Paris at age 17 in 1972, decides to help launch Anna on her own journey of discovery. What Claire doesn't anticipate, though, is that Anna will take a job at the famed Parisian chocolate shop of the older woman's first lover, Thierry, and that Anna will fall in love with Thierry's estranged son, Laurent. The City of Lights is not just a backdrop here-it's the beacon guiding Anna's emotional awakening and Claire's reconciliation with her first and last love. This cross-generational story is as irresistible as Colgan's portrayal of Paris itself-and all things chocolate. Agent: Deborah Schneider, Gelfman Schneider Literary Agents. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.