BOOK CLUB: The Girl Who Reads on the Métro

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[Total: 3 Average: 4]

ISBN: 9781509868339
Author: Christine Féret-Fleury
Publisher: Copy courtesy of Pan MacMillan

“The Girl Who Reads on the Metro” is a quick and easy book to read in a day with a very simple storyline. I enjoyed the plot line about people’s passion for books and it is based around the principle of releasing books into the wild (you leave a book in a public place and someone picks it up and reads it and then releases it back out into the world once finished).


I love this concept as here in Australia I follow “Books on the Rail”. Juliette lives in Paris, working a 9-5pm job she does not love and the highlight of her day is her trip on the Metro to and from work. She reads and people watches, checking what they are reading and dreaming up stories of who these people are and why they have picked the books they have. I too commute for work and I love being able to read on the train and you do get to know the people you travel with daily in your head.

We seem to have habits like which carriage we get into and where we sit and Juliette lets her imagination go regarding the lady with the cookbook, the young girl with the romance novels and the amateur ornithologist. One morning Juliette decides to get off at a different station and she is drawn to a rusty gate wedged open with a book. Why would someone do that to a book is her first thought and so she enters after meeting the owners daughter and she is invited in.

She meets Soliman and his daughter Zaide and finds the most enchanting bookshop that he runs, different to any bookstore she has ever been in. He introduces her to the role of a passeur – “The passuer has to choose a reader. Someone they will have watched, even followed, until they are able to intuit the book the person needs.” Juliette finds her own way to complete the task of a passuer but I loved this concept, that books can make people feel better, change their mindset, bring back memories or just make a person feel loved.

The characters are simple, the writing simple but I loved the theme of the magic of books – reading and sharing them. I do recommend it and I am sure any booklover will find magic in the pages.

Thank you Pan MacMillan and Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to read and review this delightful tale.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading The Girl Who Reads on the Métro. You can read their comments below, or contribute to the discussion by leaving your own feedback.

9 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: The Girl Who Reads on the Métro

  1. Juliette takes the Metro to work each day and enjoys people watching, especially people reading books. Juliette loves books: she watches the lady who reads romances and who always smiles at page 247, the older lady and her cooks books and the man and his insect book. One day Juliette decides to get off the metro several stops before her run of the mill job at the Real Estate Agency and she comes across a shop ‘Books Unlimited’. A young girl Zaide coaxes her in and it is here she meets Soliman, the bookshop owner. Soliman invites her to become a paaseur, a person who passes on used books to a new ‘chosen’ owner. Juliette takes on this role very seriously and life takes a new direction. She gives up her boring day job and moves into the bookstore. Soliman has to go away and entrusts Juliette with not only the bookstore but also his daughter Zaide.

    I do love a book about books and although this short story is entertaining it lacked depth and was a little slow at times. 3/5

  2. The Girl who reads on the Metro by Christine Feret-Fleury … now this was a much anticipated story and I was so delighted when I was successful in receiving a copy for review. The novel starts out slow and gets distracted quite quickly. Maybe the depth was lost in translation, but it is a slowly deteriorating plethora of nonsensical words contriving a superficial storyline. I only lasted to page 47 – at a push – when I decided to let it be. This is the only book I’ve not read to at least halfway. I hope to have better luck next time.

  3. The Girl who reads on the Metro is a nice easy read! I loved how every story line within the book tidys up nicely at the end. Juliette has to catch the train for her job that she is not really happy in. The train ride gives her time to do 2 of her favorite things, read and people watch- where this takes her is quite fascinating. Enjoyed this book very much!!

  4. This is a fabulous, quirky little book Juliette’s life is very narrow. She’s been nowhere, done nothing but she observes people reading on the train. And then something happens which changes her life. Books are still very involved. There are many literary references throughout and at the end is a list of titles that have been referred to. I’ll now be reading some of those that I haven’t already read

  5. I was really looking forward to reading the Girl Who Reads on the Metro as I love books about books. While it is short, and easy to read it was a little slow at times and I found the overall story about Juliette and her journey a little underwhelming. While the concept and setting was interesting and romantic I felt it failed to deliver – not enough of the storyline was explored in my opinion. I am not sure if my expectations were too high or I missed the intent, but I would only recommend this book for those who like to look out for literary references.

  6. An interesting novel about a woman called Juliette who seems unsatisfied with life.. .she meets the mysterious Soliman who changes her life forever.

    I expected a little more “depth” to her story and I found this a hard read… perhaps it lost a little in translation. Having said that, I did enjoy the setting and premise of the book.

  7. This was an easy and quick book to read.
    Quirky and at times interesting but I do have to say at times I felt like Alice at the Mad Hatters tea party.
    A lot just didn’t make sense and felt like having a rather crazy conversation with someone.
    Unfortunately not a book I would recommend.

  8. This was a very different and charming little book, easy to read and it brings out the value of reading, about loving books.and the enchantment they bring to our lives. I personally found the concept rather magical and enjoyable in its uniqueness. I love the cover and I think its a great idea for a gift for any quirky book loving friend..

  9. I was really excited to read this novel but it didn’t deliver as well as similar novels like The Book Ninja that were written by the girls who invented Books on the Rail. Juliette rides the metro to work everyday and spends most of her trip either reading or watching the other commuters and dreaming up reasons for why they chose the books they are reading.
    One day on a whim she gets off at a new station when adventure follows and she discovers a magical little bookshop and some great characters that change her life.
    I think any booklover will enjoy the book but it does slow down at times.
    Thanks to Pan MacMillan and Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to read this book.

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