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BOOK REVIEW: Seven Letters from Paris

Book editor Kerre’s McIvor reviews the latest summer beach read from Samantha Verant.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to meet up with your first love again? Samantha Verant had just turned 40 and had recently been laid off from her job as an art director. Opportunities for work were slim to non-existent as the global financial crisis gripped the United States.

Samantha’s credit card debt was staggering and her marriage was in crisis – when her husband flew away on business trips, she imagined the plane crashing and freeing them both.

So what does a girl do when she’s in deep despair? She called her best girlfriend, they opened a bottle of wine and reminisced about the good old days when they were young and carefree.

Samantha and her friend Tracey had travelled to Paris back in 1989, where Samantha had a 48-hour affair with a Frenchman she’d met in a café.

After returning home, her fling, Jean Luc, sent her seven love letters but Samantha didn’t reply to them. She was scared and mistrustful and felt that Jean Luc belonged to another time and another life. She devoted herself to her studies and later, to a loveless marriage.

Now, with her life at an all-time low, she decided it was time to respond to Jean Luc, to apologise for her silence and to thank him for a time in her life that had been brief but precious.

Fortunately, we live in the days of the internet and social media – where just about anyone in the world is a Google search away. Samantha found Jean Luc, she emailed him – and if you want to know what happened, read the book!

Samantha Verant may not be the best writer you’ll ever read, but she’s a great storyteller and her tale is an inspiration for all of us who want to believe in second chances.

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