The Siren of Paris
By David LeRoy
Book provided by Book Promotion Services
The Siren of Paris is a novel about a young man caught up in the violence and betrayal of World War II. In the late 1930s, Marc travels to Paris to study art. He falls in love with one of the models in his class and is beginning to feel at home in his new city. But the war is encroaching on Paris, and it is not long before Marc is losing friends, doubting the woman he loves, and deciding where he stands in the war between good and evil.
This self-published novel really exhibits the amount of time and effort that its author took with his research. Mr. LeRoy takes his readers through the streets of Paris and shows the way the Parisian people were ignorant of the true toll of the war before it rolled down their own streets. He also uses many events of the time period, some that are well-known and some that are less known. I think even readers who are fond of World War II novels will learn about the underground resistance in Paris and the wartime tragedy of the RMS Lancastria.
The Siren of Paris jumps around a lot. It starts at the end and then goes back through the story. The transitions often struck me as awkward. I felt as though the previous section hadn't really ended and I was suddenly reading about another day or another character.
The beginning device in the novel is indicative of how many characters are thrown into this novel. Marc is making friends and acquaintances from the moment he gets to Paris, and it can be confusing. The sheer volume of characters makes it difficult to really connect with them. Unfortunately, it also contributes to distance from our protagonist. While I was interested in him, I never really found myself fearing for him or anxious to find out what would happen next.
I think Mr. LeRoy has some serious potential as a writer of historical fiction. His passion for history comes through on every page of meticulous research. While The Siren of Paris struggles with transition and character development, it is a book that sheds new light on lesser known historical events and the blurring of lines between good and evil during times of war.
To the ladies and gentlemen of the FTC: I received this book from the author and Book Promotions Services in exchange for a review. The opinions expressed here are my own.