Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Summer in Paris

I was asked to do a book review of Summer in Paris by Michele Ashman Bell. (click on her name to see her blog.  Picture of Michele below )
I love doing book reviews because as a busy mother of three it gives me an excuse to actually take the time to read!  I need to learn to take more time for myself I suppose, but with a two month old, 3 year old, and 6 year old and not to mention demands of a wife, housekeeper, and church callings. I just keep reminding myself there is a time and season for all things. My time for luxury reading as much as I would like might come a little later down the road. 
However, I actually have two books to tell you about that I have been able to read. One will wait until a later post. This post is all about Michele's Summer in Paris a book geared toward tweens and teens, but I found myself enjoying it plenty and I think anyone of any age can find the fun in its story.

Here is the blurb:
Kenzie Williams feels like she has it all; wealth, friends, popularity and talent. But when her father tells her that he has declared bankruptcy, her whole world in New York City turns upside down. Her parents' solution while they sort through their financial and marital problems is to send Kenzie to live with her relatives in Paris . . . Idaho!

Feeling like she's been sentenced to three months in Hickville Prison, Kenzie arrives in Idaho feeling like a square peg, with name brand clothes, in a round, horribly podunk, hole.

Leaving everything she loves behind, Kenzie is forced to get up at the crack of dawn, do chores, and hang out with her cousin's loser friends. She feels like she's about to die until she meets Adam White, the town outcast, whose been accused of killing his best friend and is being blamed for some trouble that's been happening around town.

Not only is Adam the best-looking guy she's ever seen, but he's also the most fascinating guy she's ever met and Kenzie is determined to get to know him and find out his secret. But, the longer she stays in Paris, the more she realizes, Adam isn't the only one keeping secrets.

I liked the concept of the city girl being thrown into the "Hickville Prison" to later find the depth of a small town, value of hard work, and good people.  
 I'm from a tiny ranch town so I could relate to the descriptions and events Michele described in her setting town of Paris, Idaho. I found myself chuckling to the "small town" ways she depicted humorously. 

It's not hard to fall in love with her characters. Kenzie's flaws only made her character more believable and true to live. I also enjoyed the mystery about Adam's character.

I don't know Michele Ashman Bell personally but she must be full of personality because her writing was entwined with spunky charm.
For instance here is a snip it or two from her book, "Not to mention how annoying she found the two girls who looked like extras from Saved by the Bell. . ."   or "He seemed dumb as Play-Doah, but there was something teddy-bearish and lovable about him.  I could list many of the similes she wrote that made me smile.

The story was delightful and entertaining. I would recommend it to anyone but especially to tweens and teens. It was a perfect balance of suspense, light heartiness, and romance. Another great thing is it is clean and has settle values.  When my daughter is older I hope she will read it.


Anonymous said...

Nice blog you got here... Just droppin' by to say hi! http://www.arts-and-entertainment.info

Haley Hatch Freeman said...

Thanks for checking it out. Feel free to learn more about my book and story at afuturefortomorrow.com

Michele Ashman Bell said...

Haley, you darling person! Thank you for your wonderful review and for the great insights and thoughts about the story. I am so happy I got to visit your site and see what you're all about. I would love to return the favor. Your story sounds powerful and so very important!

Haley Hatch Freeman said...

Michele- Thanks for your comment. I would love to share my story with you.