Friday , January 15 2021

The Ritz under the Occupation

American novelist Melanie Benjamin has a knack for finding women whose atypical story has not always been told. After having been very well documented, it is therefore the life of Blanche Ross Auzello that she will choose to relate this time.

So far, we have enjoyed all the books of American novelist Melanie Benjamin: The aviator’s wife, which looks at the life of Charles Lindbergh’s wife, The Swans of Fifth Avenue, which tells of the very special friendship that united the writer Truman Capote with the socialite Babe Paley, Hollywood Boulevard, which lifts the veil on the very beginnings of Hollywood cinema, and now, The lady of the Ritz.

This lady, who really existed, has a name: Blanche Ross Auzello. And as the title allows us to guess, she has long ensured the comfort of all the wealthy clients of the mythical Ritz hotel on the Place Vendôme, her husband Claude being none other than the manager of the establishment.

A palace that keeps busy

In June 1940, when the German army invaded the streets of Paris, it was at the Ritz that its senior leaders – including Hermann Göring himself – chose to establish their new quarters. A real nightmare for the Auzello couple, who will therefore have to get used to seeing Nazi soldiers armed to the teeth walking around the hotel. Because as incredible as it may seem, the Ritz will never close its doors during the Occupation. It was up to Blanche to manage to accommodate Hitler’s customers and passing civilians, even if she was the first to have a lot to hide.

A fascinating read that allows us much more than to discover the history of the Ritz: it allows us to meet a woman whose career has been quite unique.


Under the eternal Finnish sun

We don’t often have the chance to read novels whose action is set in Finland. And as a bonus, this one allows us to discover the hottest beach in the country: Palm Beach Finland. But bad luck, it is precisely there that a woman will not take long to be cold. In a rather burlesque way, what is more. Because throughout this frankly entertaining book, there is no lack of black humor!

The border

With this third and final part of the brilliant series Cartel, the American writer Don Winslow offers us more than 1000 pages of pleasure under high tension. Because even if he no longer works (for the moment!) At the Drug Enforcement Administration, Art Keller cannot help but make life difficult for drug traffickers. Especially since the opioid crisis began claiming tens of thousands of lives in the United States each year.

Curries in all sauces

A great way to travel these days? Open this book of exotic recipes and cook your curry dishes from everywhere: curry hummus, Thai chicken curry with noodles, grilled sea bream with Breton curry, Cambodian curry pork, Kerala style shrimp curry … eat hot or not, there is something for everyone.

Once upon a time james bond

We think we know all kinds of things about James Bond, the most famous spy in cinema. That he loves vodka martini (mixed with a shaker, not with a spoon!), That he collects female conquests, that he has a weakness for Aston Martins and that he has a rather particular sense of humor. . But what is it really? Based on the books of its creator, Briton Ian Fleming, this bio tells us a lot more about the “real” 007.

Chills guaranteed

Night fire

Here we are at the 25th opus of the series Harry bosch. Yes already. And since fictional characters can age too, it won’t be long before Bosch, who had knee surgery, now has to move around with a cane. Which will not be very practical to arrive on time at the funeral of John Jack Thompson, the man who, 30 years ago, was his very first homicide teammate and who among other things taught him to handle every case. personally.

However, even his widow will not be able to explain one thing: why John Jack had insisted on stealing the file of an unresolved case dating back to the very beginning of the 1990s.

A cold case and a fire

As you can imagine, it will be Bosch to find out. But as he is far from being at the best of his form, he will go find Renée Ballard, the young inspector whom he had the chance to meet a few months earlier in Dark and sacred night, in order to ask him a little help.

Still assigned to the night shift in a Hollywood police station, Ballard however already has plenty of things to do. A homeless man has indeed been found burned alive after a night fire and she will be one of the only people who really want to understand what happened. Anyway, another great Michael Connelly.

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