Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Paris, A Love Story

I like memoirs, like to read about other people's lives and experiences, and even better if it has something to do with Paris. This is a memoir by Kati Marton, a journalist and writer who was  married to Peter Jennings for 15 years,  and then to American diplomat Richard Holbrooke. She wrote this book after the sudden death of Holbrooke in 2010, when she sold her apartment in NYC and moved to Paris.

I was hooked right at the beginning of the book,  when she talks about her time as a student at the Sorbonne in Paris, because it brought back so many memories of my own time as a student at the Sorbonne. She was there during the student riots in 1969, about five years before I arrived. When she talks about the huge amphitheaters of the Sorbonne, I remembered being so terrified and thrilled at the same time in those huge lecture halls.  I loved reading about her discoveries in Paris, because they felt so familiar. She even studied in the same library I did.

She spent a lot of time in Paris with both Jennings and Holbrooke and so it is no surprise that she goes back to Paris at such an emotional time to reflect on her life and to write this book.  In the rest of the book she talks about her childhood in Budapest and the trauma of her journalist parents' imprisonment by the secret police, her rising career as a foreign correspondent and how her ambition threatened her marriage to Jennings, and her much happier and more fulfilling marriage with Holbrooke.   She has certainly had an interesting and exciting life, filled with adventure and well-known friends (including close friends Bill and Hillary Clinton) and it was fun to read.

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