Title: Twenty-One Nights in Paris
Author: Leonie Mack
Published on: 6 October 2022
Irena and Sacha come from two very different worlds. Irena, an heiress, has made the Ritz in Paris her home while Sacha lives in Paris’s less salubrious suburbs. They meet by chance. Irena was on her way to the train station, to catch the next Eurostar back home (London) when her car collides with a bicycle. The rider is thrown off his bike and Irena goes to help him. His bike is badly mangled and she offers to pay for it, take him to hospital and take care of the medical expenses too. But the man refuses.
Somehow Irena coerces him to visit the emergency ward. As Irena is waiting for her car, she cannot stop but feel a weird attraction to the man. He’s called Sacha. They visit a local pub – Irene has never been anywhere outside of Ritz, Paris. She loses her engagement ring at the pub. The two go back to their respective homes – and might never meet again. But life has a surprise in store for them.
Sacha is at the Ritz the next day, to return Irena’s lost ring. He overhears her say “he’s the last man she wants to spend time with in Paris.” But there’s a problem. Irena, or Ren, as she’s known as, doesn’t want to go back to London. She makes up an excuse when her grandmama calls up. She says she’s found someone in Paris and wants to spend time with him. She introduces Sacha to her grandmama as her boyfriend.
Irena’s grandmother thinks Irena’s affair with Sacha won’t last for long. After all, he’s a street rat while she’s a rich heiress. But when Irena refuses to come back to London, her grandmother gives her three weeks to settle things down. What Irena and Sacha do not know is that, a lot can happen over three weeks. A fake relationship can turn into a real one…
When I came across Twenty-One Nights in Paris by Leonie Mack on NetGalley, I knew I had to give this book a try. Fake relationship, Paris, Christmas, rich heiress… tropes for a modern-day fairy tale. 🙂
I absolutely loved the storytelling. I was so lost in the story that I did not want it to end. Absolutely likable characters, fairy-tale-ish setting, Christmas romance, and oodles of charm. One thing that stood out the most was Ren’s transformation. She had a sheltered upbringing – after her parents died in a helicopter crash, her grandmother looked after her.
Then came Ziggy, the assistant who brought success and then some more to her grandmother’s fortune. Irena was a social-media influencer and was always expected to look good and act nice in public. The paps were always waiting for her.
Irena’s engagement to Charlie broke over six-months ago but it was kept under wraps until now…when Charlie’s girlfriend posted their photo on Instagram. Irena was unavailable in London to comment on the ‘new’ development in her personal life. The paps must not know what Irena’s up to in Paris – especially her so-called relationship with Sacha.
As the story proceeds, we see Ren and Sacha grow closer. Both have had traumatic childhood experiences. While Sacha learned it the hard way that life’s not always fair, Ren grew up under her grandmama’s shadow. Ren wants freedom. She wants to be able to do all the things she wasn’t allowed to – and she does not want the paps to know of it.
Then comes a surprise – in the form of Charlie and his new girlfriend Charlotte. Charlie is sure Sacha and Ren are not a couple and would go to any extent to prove it. I felt so bad for what Ren had to go through – growing up in a controlled environment wouldn’t have been easy, especially after going through a traumatic experience. Sacha made her see that she’s worth a lot more than she believed to be. And it’s no surprise that Sacha and Ren fall in love… this time for real.
I felt the ending was a bit hurried up but overall, this was a pretty engaging and charming read. If you are looking for a charming Christmas romance, I recommend you to give Twenty-One Nights in Paris by Leonie Mack a try.
I received an ARC from Boldwood Books and NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.
I like a charming read every now and then.
Me too. 😊 brings me out of a reader’s block.