The Lost Love Letters of Henri Fournier: A Novel
by Rosalind Brackenbury
Lake Union Publishing

"Our stories are what create us and let us live: they are the engines of our live."

This unique and unforgettable love story spans three different time periods over one century. The book opens in 1975 Paris where Sebastian (“Seb”) Fowler, an ambitious 25-year-old English author, arrives to interview 98-year-old Pauline about her deceased love and Seb’s literary idol—the world-renowned Henri Fournier. Next, the story jumps to pre-war 1912 where the love affair between Pauline, a famous theatre performer, and Henri, the secretary of Pauline’s husband Claude, unfolds as the imminent war draws near. The third part of the tale, set in modern-day Paris, blends the two stories together as Isa, Henri’s great-niece, invites Seb, now in his 60’s, to review love letters between Pauline and Henri written during World War I. Has Pauline finally found the right person to reveal the story of the great love of her life to the world? How will the legacy of the timeless love affair affect the choices of the next generation?

Brackenbury gracefully weaves a tantalizing tale of a wartime relationship based on intellectual connection and lasting courage. She explores the deep lessons of love, mistakes, and family choices that future generations can learn from the stories and teachings of older generations. The vivid description of how trains, telephones, and telegrams enhanced communication and “united lovers with ease” cause the reader to reflect on how profoundly changes from one generation to the next can affect the characters’ everyday lives and love stories. The author keeps the reader curious until the very end about how the characters will connect, but the last few chapters build to a beautiful open-ended resolution that makes the reader eagerly anticipate an equally beautifully written sequel.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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