August in Paris calls for homemade lemonade, cold salads and wide-open windows, our flat breathing in fresh air. After a few somber reads, I needed a change in my reading life and picked up a feel-good novel, The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary. Living in a big city can call for some odd behaviors: on-demand dog walking, avoiding eye contact in public, or as O’Leary imagines, and a bedshare. Yes, readers, a bedshare.
Shifting between the present and past, Gaël Faye’s novel, Small Country, takes us from France to Burundi and Rwanda in the early nineties. The novel depicts childhood growing up in a multicultural family, coping with political unrest and seeking refuge in another country. Sarah Ardizzone translated this novel from French into English, furthering new audiences across the world to remember genocide and war.