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Reviewed by Heather Osborne for Readers' Favorite
Where Irises Never Grow by Paulette Mahurin is a historical fiction novel set during World War II in France. When Monica finds two names on a slip of paper inside a French version of Aesop’s Fables while working on her dissertation, she embarks on a journey to discover who the book belonged to. Monica soon finds out more than she ever imagined about the previous owners, who were Resistance fighters during the Second World War. The Legrand family of Lyon does what they can to keep on the good side of the Vichy government regime, but it soon becomes evident that their time is growing short. Sheltering a young Jewish girl, Agnes, Charlotte and her husband, Victor, grow increasingly agitated as the noose tightens. But when unexpected events come into play, will the family be able to survive as the Butcher of Lyon swoops in to root out any remaining undesirables?
There are really no words for the emotions evoked by Where Irises Never Grow by Paulette Mahurin. This is an author I will pick up time and time again, and with each book, the stories become increasingly heartwrenching. I found myself becoming so attached to the characters, especially Charlotte, who was immensely raw and realistic. There were times I wanted to lash out at Agnes, and by the end, I was in tears. This is one of those novels that stick with you for a long time after you’ve put it down. I cannot wait to see what Ms. Mahurin comes up with next. A very well deserved five stars.