My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Recently published in paperback
Paris, today. The Museum of Broken Promises is a place of wonder and sadness, hope and loss. Every object in the museum has been donated – a cake tin, a wedding veil, a baby’s shoe. And each represent a moment of grief or terrible betrayal. The museum is a place where people come to speak to the ghosts of the past and, sometimes, to lay them to rest. Laure, the owner and curator, has also hidden artefacts from her own painful youth amongst the objects on display.
Prague, 1985. Recovering from the sudden death of her father, Laure flees to Prague. But life behind the Iron Curtain is a complex thing: drab and grey yet charged with danger. Laure cannot begin to comprehend the dark, political currents that run beneath the surface of this communist city. Until, that is, she meets a young dissident musician. Her love for him will have terrible and unforeseen consequences. It is only years later, having created the museum, that Laure can make finally face up to her past and celebrate the passionate love which has directed her life.
A week after reading this book, I’m still thinking about it. The story is set in modern day Paris, Prague in 1985 under Communist rule and in Berlin shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. As a teenager in Britain in the 1980’s, it was fascinating to read how different life was for teenagers in Prague.
The story is well thought out, the characters are believable and the museum is fascinating – some of the stories of the broken promises were heartbreaking. The story of Laure, the owner and curator is emotional and not an easy read in places (police brutality) but I’m glad that I read such an interesting and thought provoking book.
Thank you to NetGalley and Corvus for an uncorrected proof copy in return for my honest review.
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