The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles is based on the true World War II story of the heroic librarians of the American Library in Paris. In the book, Charles explores the consequences of our choices and the relationships that make us who we are, and shows that extraordinary heroism can be found in the quietest of places.
There are two story lines woven together in this book. One is in 1939 Paris, with Odile Souchet in her dream job at the American Library in Paris, until the Nazis march into Paris. Together, with her fellow librarians, Odile joins the Resistance. But when the war finally ends, instead of freedom, Odile tastes the bitter sting of unspeakable betrayal.
The other line is set in 1983 Montana with a lonely teenager, Lily, looking for adventure in a small town. Her interest is piqued by her solitary, elderly neighbor. As Lily uncovers more about her neighbor’s mysterious past, she finds that they share a love of language, the same longings, and the same intense jealousy, never suspecting that a dark secret from the past connects them.