Confession time: I’ve had a hard time letting go of Christmas this year. I still have a few lingering holiday decorations hanging up that I’m now calling “winter flair” and I’m deeply mourning the end of my Candy Cane Milanos. (How will I ever wait another ELEVEN MONTHS for them to come back?!) I love Christmas, so it should come as no surprise that Heather Webb and Hazel Gaynor’s Last Christmas in Paris was a must read for me. And best of all? This historical novel is one you can enjoy during any season, and one I’ll definitely read again.
Told almost entirely through letters, Last Christmas in Paris is a gorgeous love story set against the backdrop of the First World War. In 1914, Evie Elliot says goodbye to her brother, Will, and his lifelong best friend, Tom Harding as the boys head off to the Western front. Assuming that the war will end quickly, the three look to the not-too-distant future and dream of reconnecting in Paris at Christmastime. As the months turn into long, war-torn years, Evie and Tom’s letters take them from childhood friends to so much more, their bond growing deeper as the world crumbles around them. Decades later, Tom finds himself returning to Paris, with one last promise in his heart and one last letter left to read. Last Christmas in Paris is a beautiful tale of friendship, sacrifice, the effects of war, and the miracle of love, and it truly is a book I will never forget.
Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb do an incredible job of bringing these characters to life through their letters, and Evie, in particular, is a character who will always stay with me. I love novels that showcase the heroic roles women played during the war, and Last Christmas in Paris does just that. Even during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, I couldn’t help but sneak away to devour this treasure for hours on end. I was so wrapped up in the romance, the bravery, the strength of the characters, and the lost art of letter writing that even after I finished the book, my head and my heart were still somewhere in France. This book felt like a modern-day classic to me, and Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb will be go-to authors for me from now on (both separately and together).
If you love historical fiction, unforgettable characters, and stories that stay with you long after you finish the last chapter, pick up Last Christmas in Paris. It truly is a book you can savor any time of year, so don’t feel like you have to wait until your house is filled with pine needles again.
And if your house is filled with pine needles still–no judgement. It’s winter flair.
Last Christmas in Paris is available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, or wherever books are sold. For more on Heather Webb, visit her website and follow her on Facebook and Twitter. Follow Hazel Gaynor on Facebook, Twitter, and visit hazelgaynor.com.