Thursday, March 15, 2012

Thirteen Things about Paris Adieu

About Paris Adieu

The first time Ava Fodor visits Paris as a nineteen-year old au pair, her French boyfriend introduces her to the concept of being comfortable in her own skin. If only she knew how…
One Ivy League degree later, she’s back for an encounter with a Frenchman that awakens her to womanhood.  If only she could stay….
Five years later, Ava returns to Paris as a singer/pianist. She falls for Arnaud, whose frequent travel tortures her. While he’s away, a surprising stranger helps Ava on her journey to self-discovery. Armed with the lessons Paris has taught her, she bids adieu to Arnaud, Pierre and her very first love –  the City of Light.

Thirteen Things about  Paris Adieu
1. Paris Adieu's theme is how to be comfortable in your own skin.

2. The motto of Paris Adieu's main character, Ava Fodor, is "fake it till you make it."  That's what Ava does until she finally figures out how to be comfortable in her own skin.

3. Ava arrives in Paris at age nineteen addicted to sugar and fat. After three stays in France, she returns to New York  to settle down, no longer addicted to sugar and fat.  Paris Adieu tells the story of Ava's deliverance from unhealthy eating habits. 

4.  Ava's boyfriend Jean Michel teaches Ava that men fall in love with a woman's idiosyncracies - not her perfection.  For the first time in her life, Ava realizes she doesn't have to look like Barbie or even aspire to. The scales fall from her eyes. She'll never forget the gift of self-acceptance her first French boyfriend gives her.

5.  When Ava leaves Paris to enter Yale, she's suddenly in the club she always wanted to join, but she still feels like an outsider. She applies her "fake it till you make it" motto to navigate the social scene there. Lessons learned from her first French boyfriend as well as the way Parisian women carry themselves guide her.  She'll never be a preppie, but what her time in Paris has taught her is that she doesn't need to be. All she needs  is to be genuinely, authentically, fabulously herself .

 6. Pascal, Ava's second French boyfriend, is unlike any man Ava has ever met - his satisfaction rests in satisfying Ava. As soon as she recognizes this, she realizes this is the kind of man she wants to be with because he will encourage her to seek her own satisfaction. 

7.  From Pascal, Ava learns what it is to be a woman. When she leaves him, the memory of what they had together makes her resolve to never ever be untrue to herself -- in the bedroom. It's a great lesson for her to learn; one which she never forgets.  

8. Ava is secretly attracted to men who remind her of John Boy Walton of the seventies TV show The Waltons. 

9. Ava realizes that much of what she admires about Parisian women is what she admired about her grandmother, who raised her, and who never stepped foot in France. The sense of exactingness or exigeance appeals to her. The strict rules about how to wear a scarf, how to combine certain foods with certain wines, how to attract a man's attention and hold it -- all fascinate her.  Time spent on the other side of the ocean from the woman who raised her gives Ava permission to recognize an important fact about herself - she's more like her grandmother than she thought and there's nothing wrong with that. She just needed to get away from her to  discover who she truly is, with the help of lessons learned in the City of Light.

10. Arnaud de Saint Cyr, Ava's third French boyfriend, has a razor sharp mind. For the first time, Ava falls in love with a man's intellect. She is thrilled to match wits with him, never before experiencing love in the cerebral arena. There's nothing like it. Until she realizes that being with  Arnaud keeps her continually on edge, struggling to maintain supremacy in a zero-sum game. 

 11. Ava discovers a certain violence within herself that finds expression with Arnaud in their love life.  She realizes that the meaner she is to him, the more attracted he is to her. Although pleased to wield power in their relationship, she remembers the lesson Pascal had taught her -- be true to your own self. The more time she spends with Arnaud, the more she realizes she can't truly be herself around him. 

12. Pierre, Arnaud's childhood friend, is the first man in Ava's life who listens to her original songs and asks about their meaning. He helps Ava to discover something important about her professional identity. She isn't meant to be a performer. She's meant to be a songwriter.

13.  Ava's friendship with Pierre ends her love affair with Arnaud. Arnaud's feelings for her are like sugar and fat sending her on a never-ending emotional  rollercoaster ride. She's ready to get off.  Over her junk food habit, she values her quiet, soul satisfying time with Pierre. But will she ruin it all by taking their friendship a step further?  Find out in Paris Adieu's sequel, Black is Not a Color, coming out in fall 2012. 

Rozsa Gaston is an author who writes serious books on playful matters. She is the author of Paris Adieu, Dogsitters, Budapest Romance, Lyric, Running from Love and the soon to be released Paris Adieu sequel, Grey Dress, Black Belt. Rozsa studied European intellectual history at Yale, and then received her master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia. In between Rozsa worked as a singer/pianist all over the world. She currently lives in Connecticut with her family.
You can visit Rozsa’s website at
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