In Scènes de la Vie Americaine (en Paris), Victoria Leigh Bennett takes us back to her teenage years, as a first trip abroad opens her eyes to the possibilities of the French metropolis, and of the first buds of romance. This playful, tender memoir shows us the wonder of the city of love seen through fresh eyes. It is ripe with youthful adventure, and as bitter-sweet as a coffee and croissant.”
Scènes de la Vie Americaine (en Paris) is a playful riff off of Honoré de Balzac‘s work Scènes de la Vie Parisienne, and sets the mood for a thoughtful memoir of youthful experiences abroad in the French capital. A city that has inspired so much literature, now has another view, which is a pleasantly nostalgic one.
It is difficult to talk too much about the book without giving away spoilers, so please forgive me if I am somewhat vague on the content and don’t expand on the blurb too much hereafter.
The reader is treated to three vignettes which give a wonderful sense of not only place and time, but also of self. Vicki’s introspective reminiscences make for a wonderful read and not only brings out the misty-eyed ememberance of travels in past days but also a yearning for more of her words.
Speaking of which, any book that gets the word ‘brouhaha’ in is always going to get a firm nod from me. A view from an American in Europe, especially being in a city synonymous with love, will always seem more eventful for some reason, and I am sure that everyone has come across the cliché, but Vicki has certainly done her bit to bring a bit of understanding for us Europeans.
Scènes de la Vie Americaine (en Paris) is one of those books that you know you will get through in one sitting, whilst desperately try to prolong the reading pleasure by deciding to break it up into parts. And then you’ll just read it straight through anyway with a spirit of reckless abandon.
Vicki’s other book Poems from the Northeast, is also one I can recommend for those who enjoy a varied jaunt in the world of words.