Anna Trent in a supervisor at a chocolate factory in England before a terrible accident puts her in the hospital and off kilter with her life. At the hospital, Anna reunites with her old French teacher, Claire. Claire inspires Anna to take a new job in Paris at the gourmet chocolate shop, Le Chapeau Chocolat. Claire herself left her restrictive home for Paris as a 17-year old in 1972. She was the nanny for her mother’s friend’s children and met Thierry Girard the young owner of Le Chapeau Chocolat. In present day Anna meets Thierry and learns the difference between gourmet chocolate and the chocolate that she once produced at her factory. Thierry has a unique personality and Anna wonders what was once between Thierry and Claire. Anna also has an exuberant roommate, Sami, who is determined that Anna have a fun time while she is in Paris. While out on the town, she meets and instantaneously dislikes and is fascinated by the mysterious chef Laurent, who also happens to be Thierry’s son.
The novel bounces back and forth between 1972 and present day. I felt intrigued by both storylines as I wanted to know if each woman would be able to find herself in Paris. I also LOVE chocolate so the behind the scenes narrative of making chocolate at a gourmet shop in France was intriguing to me. A bonus was all of the chocolate recipes at the end of the book that I need to check out now. I thought the characters were interesting as well. The only downside to this book was that there was a bit in the middle that seemed to go slow for me. It did pick up though and I sped through to the end.
Overall, this novel is a great romance and coming of age story that involves chocolate. What more can you ask for?
Book Source: Review copy from Sourcebooks. Thank-you!