The Girl Who Reads on the Métro

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Title: The Girl Who Reads on The Métro (original title: La Fille qui Lisait dans le Métro)

Writer: Christine Féret-Fleury, Ros Schwartz (Translator)

Publishing House: Flatiron Books

Date of Publication: October 8th 2019 (first published 2017)

Rating: 5 stars

‘’He was talking about books as if they were alive – old friends, powerful adversaries at times, insolent teenagers and elderly ladies sitting by the fire. In our bookcases? Grumpy wise men and mistresses, uncontrollable passions, future killers, thin paper boys offering their hands to fragile damsels whose beauty grew thin with every description. Some books were wild horses that took you with them in a mad galloping while you were hanging, breathless. Others were like boats sailing softly on a lake lit by the moonlight. And some were prisons.’’

Juliette commutes daily to her mundane work in a real estate agency. Her employer is a vacant man. Her colleague an even more vacant woman. Juliette’s way out is to observe the people in the metro and their reading choices. You are what you read, some say. Or are you? One day, she decides to break her daily routine and chooses to get off at a different station. Her meeting with a brilliant young girl and her mysterious father will lead her to a life that only books can offer.

This is a novel for those of us who travel -literally – daily with a book to keep us company amidst the noise of the train tracks and the shuddering ignorance of the commuters who don’t even know how the word ‘’book’’ is written. It is a tender journey, full of Parisian flair and elegance, for the ones who inhale the smell of old and new books, those of us who know how to listen to the whispers of the pages, those of us who fell in love with Russia, Norway, Britain, France, Spain, Italy, Colombia, Mexico, Japan, Korea, and so many countries before we actually visit them. Words are the finest guides. For those of us who feel at ease when we are alone with a book in our hands because people have become too loud, too ignorant, too annoying. It is a novel for those who READ.