First Line Friday — The Librarian of Saint-Malo

6 May

Happy Friday! I have been wanting to read The Librarian of Saint-Malo by Mario Escobar for a long time. I even have a physical copy of the book on my shelf. But it’s been put back so many times, I despaired of every getting to it. Until . . . I discovered that my local library, through Libby, had the audiobook version available to borrow. Yay! I am finally reading/listening. Have you read this book? I’d love to know your thoughts.

In the meantime, here’s the first line.

Dear Marcel Zola:

Time takes care with no one.

Saint-Malo, France: August 1938. Jocelyn and Antoine are childhood sweethearts, but just after they marry and are hoping for a child, Antoine is called up to fight against Germany. As the war rages, Jocelyn focuses on comforting and encouraging the local population by recommending books from her beloved library in Saint-Malo. She herself finds hope in her letters to a famous author.

After the French capitulation, the s occupy the town and turn it into a fortress to control the north of French Brittany. Residents try passive resistance, but the German commander ruthlessly purges part of the city’s libraries to destroy any potentially subversive writings. At great risk to herself, Jocelyn manages to hide some of the books while waiting to receive news from Antoine, who has been taken to a German prison camp.

What unfolds in her letters is Jocelyn’s description of her mission: to protect the people of Saint-Malo and the books they hold so dear. With prose both sweeping and romantic, Mario Escobar brings to life the occupied city and re-creates the history of those who sacrificed all to care for the people they loved.

6 Responses to “First Line Friday — The Librarian of Saint-Malo”

  1. Cindy Davis May 6, 2022 at 7:16 am #

    Happy Friday! I hope you enjoy this one!

  2. Nicole Santana May 6, 2022 at 8:56 pm #

    Happy Friday!
    I’m currently finishing up Let It Be Me by Becky Wade. I LOVE it!!!
    “Concentration proved impossible after Sebastian’s phone call.”
    I hope you have a delightful weekend. Happy reading! 😀❤📚

  3. Paula Shreckhise May 8, 2022 at 10:59 am #

    That sounds fantastic!

    From When the Day Comes by Gabrielle Meyer:
    For as long as I could remember, my mama had told me that my life was a gift. But at the age of nineteen, I had yet to see how this life I was living – or rather, the lives I was living – could be anything other than a burden.

    • rbclibrary May 8, 2022 at 12:22 pm #

      I hope to read this book soon.

  4. Danielle Grandinetti May 8, 2022 at 12:57 pm #

    I love this cover! It always makes me want to read it, though I haven’t yet. I’m just starting Wildfire Threat by Cathy McDavid: “Aden Whitley stepped out of his truck and into a cloud of smoke thick and heavy enough to fell a man twice his size.”

    But posted about Fatal Cody by Natalie Walters: https://daniellegrandinetti.com/2022/05/06/fatal-code/

    Happy Weekend!

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