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Janet Skeslien Charles

Author of The Paris Library

3+ Works 1,978 Members 179 Reviews 3 Favorited

About the Author

Works by Janet Skeslien Charles

The Paris Library (2020) 1,706 copies
Moonlight in Odessa (2009) 271 copies

Associated Works

Montana Noir (2017) — Contributor — 48 copies


2021 (31) 2022 (9) adult (9) American Library in Paris (18) ARC (14) audiobook (8) betrayal (18) book club (9) books (15) books about books (19) California (10) Early Reviewers (11) ebook (14) family (10) fiction (157) France (52) friendship (15) goodreads (10) historical (17) historical fiction (124) history (8) Kindle (8) librarians (29) libraries (51) library (23) literature (8) mail order brides (13) Montana (26) Nazis (15) novel (11) Odessa (17) Paris (73) read (18) relationships (10) romance (15) secrets (12) to-read (215) Ukraine (28) war (9) WWII (127)

Common Knowledge

Legal name
Skeslien Charles, Janet
Places of residence
Paris, France
Shelby, Montana, USA
University of Montana (English, French, and Russian)
Awards and honors
Soros Fellowship to work and study in Odessa, Ukraine.
Laura Longrigg (MBA Literary Agents)
Short biography
Janet Skeslien Charles is currently working on her second novel. For more information please visit www.jskesliencharles.com.



This starts out with comic intent then gets decidedly bleak. Nice resolution at the end.
secondhandrose | 85 other reviews | Oct 31, 2023 |
Any book that deals with a library has to be a winner for me. The Paris Library during the WW2 Nazi occupation of France is the centerpiece of this wonderful historical fiction epic. Unfortunately, the author Janet Skeslien Charlie flips between the WW2 period and 1983 faltering she tries to connect Odile, heroine of the occupation section, with Lilly from 1983. But without enough vivid details and delicious characters you’ll easily be able to forgive the period framing device.
GordonPrescottWiener | 92 other reviews | Aug 24, 2023 |
I love, love, loved this book. It's one of those great stories that transports you and takes you away into the world of the book. It was a great story of a Paris librarian in Paris working in an American library and about how books and libraries/librarians help people and can make big differences in our lives and how this library/group of librarians helped.
It goes back and forth between present-day and past telling the story of a Paris librarian who now lives in America telling her backstory and how she helps and becomes friends with a teenage girl going through rough times with her family in the present day.
It's a great, magical read that you get lost easily in and it surprised me with how much I loved it and how great it was and now I have a big book hangover - go read it!
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1 vote
Kiaya40 | 92 other reviews | Jun 19, 2023 |
I'm a bit torn about this book.
It kept my interest and at times I had a hard time putting it down. I liked that one storyline was set in the 1980's. I liked the character of Lily and I found her to be very realistic. I really liked that despite how she felt about her step-mom at times that she still really loved her brothers.
I loved that the storyline set in the 30's-40's took place in a library and that they discussed other books although I would have liked a bit more of that.
I liked that the book kept you guessing and wondering why Odile ended up married to someone else. I thought it portrayed well how people were just trying to get through each day during the war and sometimes people felt like they had no choice about the things they had to do and also how some people just didn't think about what was happening. For example, Odile didn't think about who had lived in the places they were visiting. Whether this was right or wrong I think it was something that people during that time period would have struggled with.

Now for the things I didn't love. I felt like the open door sex scenes, though brief were completely unnecessary and I don't know that I could recommend this book because of them. I also felt like the book was a bit heavy with all the grief. Lily's story was so sad and I had a hard time reading through that at the beginning. Of course any book dealing with WW2 and Jews being taken away is hard to read, but this one felt more weighty than some of the others I've read.
Overall I wanted to know what happened in the story and I read through it quite quickly but I wouldn't read it again.
This book was reviewed on the Literary Club Podcast https://www.buzzsprout.com/1984185/episodes/12864876
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Piper29 | 92 other reviews | Jun 18, 2023 |



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