In the summer of 1979, twenty-one-year-old Linda Kovic contracts to become an au pair for an wealthy French family in the Loire Valley. To secure the position, she pretends to speak the language, fully aware her deception will be discovered once she arrives at her destination. Based on the author’s diary, French Illusions captures Linda’s fascinating real-life story inside and outside the Château de Montclair. The over-bearing, Madame Dubois, her accommodating husband, Monsieur Dubois, and their two children are highlighted as Linda struggles to adapt to her new environment. Continually battling the language barrier, she signs up and attends classes at the local university in the nearby town of Tours, broadening her range of experiences. When she encounters, Adam, a handsome young student, her life with the Dubois family becomes more complicated, adding fuel to her internal battle for independence.
My Overall Feeling of the Book:
This book based on the author's real experiences was such a fun read! I was a little leery thinking that it was going to read like a stuffy non-fiction but in actuality the author writes in such a way that at times I forgot it was based on her real story and not a fiction. It drew me in and I didn't want to put it down.
I could feel her frustrations over Madame's attitude as if they were my own! Ms. Kovic-Skow did an amazing job translating her time as an au pair into an enjoyable visit to the French countryside from the comfort of my home.
Linda Kovic: A young American woman who pretends to speak French in order to become an au pair in France so that she can LEARN French. She has dreams of becoming a "stewardess" and traveling the world.
Madame Dubois: Madame, as she insists on being called, grew up very privileged and takes advantage of the Linda's position as au pair to basically use her as a servant of all trades.
Colette - Linda's young female charge who is well on her way to becoming a very spoiled brat! lol
Antoine - Linda's young male charge who is as sweet as can be and seems to be Linda's only joy at times.
My Favorite Scene:
My favorite scene is when Linda finally tells "Madame" exactly what she thinks!
A Brief Excerpt:
"Mademoiselle, I need you to serve the dinner tonight. Here is an apron you can wear." She pushed it into my hands.
Since my arrival at the chateau, Madame Dubois amazed me with her outlandish comments and requests, but this on seriously shocked and angered me. Serving tea on occasion was one thing, but wearing an apron and serving dinner to guests remained far beyond my job description.
I am in love with all things castle, manor, chateau and architectural so this cover was perfect in my opinion!
-Anytime I come across any variation of my name, which is unusual to see, I get excited! In this book, I noticed there were times that it was spelled Colette and times where it was spelled Collette. I'm very anal about consistency throughout books but as I have to constantly spell my name for people, I particularly notice this. For me I always say, two 'l's and 2 't's and an 'a' on the end. I am constantly being called Collette by certain people who have known me for years!
-This book's setting is France and there is a LOT of wine being consumed.
Now, for the giveaway!
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