Book Review: We’ll Always have Paris by Emma Beddington

Book Review: We’ll Always Have Paris by Emma Beddington
Being an obsessed Francophile, I couldn’t wait to read this book. I set aside time before Christmas to have relaxing days with a fellow Francophile. Sipping coffee and pretending I was french I read thinking I would love it and relate to the memoirs of real life Emma on every level.
How very wrong I was… I can honestly say, this is one of the worst books I have ever read. 
The book begins with Emma age 16, who finds a copy of French Elle in her posh boarding school library. She becomes enamoured and is determined from that day forward to become French. 16 year old Emma is ok to read – she is naive like every 16 year old, and I did feel parts of me in with her. 
However as Emma gets older, her childish naivety and petty bullshit does not stop. She continues to live this way. She states how much she enjoys fighting with her boyfriend and how glamorous having a break down should be. These actions made me despise her character. After the death of her mother Emma completely shuts people out. Even her own partner, who has stuck by her through thick and thin (the man is clearly madly in love with her because she’s a downright bitch). They decide to move to Paris.
Once they move to Paris things seem to get worse. Emma is a hypercondriact. She also makes no effort to integrate herself into french society. Her children are rowdy, and horrible. She doesn’t bother learning to cook, or dressing appropriately for the area of Paris she lives in. She gets separation anxiety from her kids, but when she’s with them, she can’t cope and resorts to self harm. This is not the kind of woman I want to read about. She seriously needs to see a psychiatrist! I was concerned consistently for her. It was very alarming how anyone could think to publish such a horrible piece. The point where she has an abortion was a low point. She claims she has turned down a job as a lawyer in order to spend time with her children, yet the idea of another child repulsed her, and she seems to hate the ones she’s already got! I just didn’t get it.
Once the family return to London Emma only gets worse. She has another break down, and stops eating, but enjoys this fact. She says she only enjoys sex now because she can feel her hip bones bouncing on his. The man who loves her reaches out to her, but she denies him at every turn. Then she leaves him. This man has been her love since they were 18. They have 2 children together, and due to her own pathetic insecurities she treats him like a pile of poo. I don’t know why he puts up with it. I really don’t. It made me sick to read these parts of the book. I felt like she was the type of woman who thinks she’s always right and ruins men’s lives for no reason. I was very angry. To top it all off, she has an affair with a married man. Then crawls back to her partner saying she loved him all along. Her behaviour is abysmal! 
This book highlighted to me, the typical problems of rich silver spooned people. She had everything she could have wanted. She went to a posh boarding school, then oxford university, she did exchanges to France, she has a partner who loves her, a great job and two healthy children. She is the only person ruining her life, yet somehow uses this book to blame it on others. 
This book wasn’t “trying and failing to be French” as it claimed. It was more like “trying and failing to be a good person” 
I hated this book. Complete waste of money.


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