The Little Paris Bookshop_ Nina George

2016 May. 03 13

28951781
picture from Goodreads

The Little Paris Bookshop

Nina George

Abacus

All the love, all the dead, all the people we’ve known. They are the rivers that feed our sea of souls. If we refuse to remember them, that sea will dry up too.

主角Jean Perdu是一間船上書屋的老闆,他擁有一種「能一眼看穿他人靈魂,並以書本為藥方治癒他們」的能力。他把書傳遞到讀者手中,療癒了無數心靈,卻找不到一本能撫平自己傷痛的書。在一封遲來的信件促使之下,Jean Perdu展開了他的塞納河之旅,試圖尋找與自己和解的藥方。

是一個(過於)甜膩的故事。

我以為我會無條件愛這本書,畢竟即使我對巴黎真的沒有幻想,巴黎和書店的組合仍讓人期待滿滿,但這本The Little Paris Bookshop不知怎麼的就是不對我胃。我喜歡有真實感的故事,而這本小說浪(荒)漫(誕)的就像在拍偶像劇,意即,發生在真實世界的機率約莫是萬分之一。除此之外,這本書可說是極與極共存的最佳代表。要不就超夢幻,要不就平淡到讓人想跳過,情緒起伏超級劇烈。

走筆至此這本書好像被我講得一無是處,不過它真的沒那麼糟啦!這本書還是有很多我非常喜歡的地方。首先它的文字很漂亮,有很多富有哲理的quote,如果你跟我一樣愛蒐集名言錦句,那這本書就非常適合你,尤其如果你也是愛書人,那麼這本書絕對看得你點頭如搗蒜心有戚戚焉!以下是一些我很喜歡的bookish quotes:

  • p.2 The bookseller could not imagine what might be more practical than a book, but he promised to give the new tenant a table. He still had one.
  • p.12 Books aren’t eggs, you know. Simply because a book has aged a bit doesn’t mean it’s gone bad.
  • p.13 Books keep stupidity at bay. And vain hopes. And vain men. They undress you with love, strength and knowledge. It’s love from within.
  • p.22 Perdu reflected that it was a common misconception that booksellers looked after books. They look after people.
  • p.27 Books are more than doctors, of course. Some novels are loving, lifelong companions; some give you a clip around the ear; others are friends who wrap you in warm towels when you’ve got those autumn blues. And some… well, some are pink candy floss that tingles in your brain for three seconds and leaves a blissful void.
  • p.179 Perdu suspected that these small children, listening with eyes wide and in rapt concentration, would one day grow up to need reading, with its accompanying sense of wonder and the feeling of having a film running inside your head, as much as they needed air to breathe.

另外,市面上多數像這種「療傷之旅」(未必真的是旅行) 的故事主角都是女性 (如:生命清單、享受吧!一個人的旅行…)。不過這本書卻從男性的視角出發,表現男性也有柔軟的一面,我覺得非常特別。至於作者揣摩男性心境的準確度,就有賴男性讀者來評判了。

最後我想說的是,我在閱讀這本書的時候,一直覺得這本書在台灣一定會大賣,我甚至可以看見它充滿文青感的包裝。這幾年這種風格清新、療癒式的作品不斷在排行榜上周旋,再加上台灣人對巴黎諸多的幻想,這本從書名到故事內容都清新的小說,真的很適合當下的台灣書市。

什麼樣的讀者會喜歡這本書?
➡️喜歡漂亮文字的讀者
➡️Quote蒐集症患者
➡️暫時不想動腦,想要讓心靈徹底放鬆的讀者
➡️愛書人

p.9 Sometimes you’re swimming in unwept tears and you’ll go under if you store them up inside.

p.109 Forgive me, Manon. Forgive me. I was young, stupid and vain.

p.126 He had known that nothing ever ends, that everything in life flows into everything else and that he could do no wrong.

p.127 ‘When the stars imploded billions of years ago, iron and silver, gold and carbon cam raining down. And the iron from that stardust is in us today ─ in our mitochondria. Mother pass on the stars and their iron to their children. Who knows, Jean, you and I might be made of the dust from one and the same star, and maybe we recognised each other by its light. We were searching for each other. We are star seekers.’

p.181 Catherine, rivers are not like the sea. The sea demands, while rivers give.

p.276 Don’t underestimate the transition, Jeanno, between farewell and new departure. Give yourself the time you need. Some thresholds are too wide to be taken in one stride.

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