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The French Photographer (Natasha Lester) – book review

What can I say about The French Photographer by Natasha Lester that hasn’t already been said? Natasha goes from strength to strength, delivering old fans and new immensely engaging stories one after another. I don’t know how she does it (although if you check her blog, she shares a lot of her process)!

Here’s the blurb:

Manhattan, Paris, 1942: When Jessica May’s successful modelling career is abruptly cut short, she is assigned to the war in Europe as a photojournalist for Vogue. But when she arrives the army men make her life as difficult as possible. Three friendships change that: journalist Martha Gellhorn encourages Jess to bend the rules, paratrooper Dan Hallworth takes her to places to shoot pictures and write stories that matter, and a little girl, Victorine, who has grown up in a field hospital, shows her love. But success comes at a price.

France, 2005: Australian curator D’Arcy Hallworth arrives at a beautiful chateau to manage a famous collection of photographs. What begins as just another job becomes far more disquieting as D’Arcy uncovers the true identity of the mysterious photographer – and realises that she is connected to D’Arcy’s own mother, Victorine.

Inspired by the true story of American photographer and photojournalist Lee Miller, The French Photographer is romantic, captivating and bursting with historical insight. It’s exactly what I’ve come to expect from Natasha, but each time, she surprises me with how effortlessly she transports the reader from wherever they are to Paris, London, the war front and so on. Her writing is graceful and assured and … enviable!

The French Photographer shines a light on a dramatic and turbulent time in history, but also on the talents of a writer I very much admire. If you’re a fan of historical fiction and you haven’t yet checked out Natasha Lester’s books … well, what are you waiting for?

Thanks to Hachette for an ARC of this book.

Monique Mulligan
For more of Monique Mulligan’s writing on books, check out her blog

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