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“Not every true story is like a good novel, but this one is.

Not every memoir of first love has a satisfying ending, but this one does.”

John Irving

Best-selling author of 17 novels including

The World According to Garp

Paris Blue — A Memoir of First Love by Julie Scolnik


When critically acclaimed author and screenwriter John Irving gives a thumb’s up to a new book, you might be more inclined to take a look.


I didn’t know that Irving had read Julie Scolnik’s memoir until I myself received a copy of the book.


The author kindly sent me a copy to review and to add to my Book Club list of memoirs written in or about Paris.


Well, I am not John Irving but what he says above is beautifully apt for this memoir.


Let me go back a little.


Most of us remember our first love.  Mine was as divine as it could be for a girl who met a true love at 16/17 and stayed together with him for over 4 years.  Even at that tender age, I discovered a real connection, someone with whom I could spend hours just talking, who adored picnics, rock music, and was supremely romantic.


Whenever we parted even for a few days, we were heartbroken, barely able to breathe on our own.  Being so young, however — it was inevitable that our lives would evolve in different directions, and we eventually and painfully went our separate ways.


BUT the glow of that first love never left me. It shaped my life afterward and haunted me for decades.


THIS is also the nature of Julie’s story.  But in her case, she finds that first love in Paris.


Twenty-year-old American student Julie Scolnik arrived in Paris (1976) to continue her undergraduate studies in music as an accomplished flutist.


She also auditioned and was accepted into The Chorus of the Orchestre de Paris where she spied a moodily handsome French baritone named Luc.


Their eyes locked, and thus began a whirlwind ride that Julie takes with a man who she offered to teach English, and you can guess the rest.


They become lovesick and as Julie writes “there was nothing I could do to reel it in.”


THEN, she has to leave to come back to the States.


And oh, did I mention that Luc was married?


Once in a while a memoir comes along that surprises you.


It is not what you expected.


It doesn’t turn out the way you might hope.


Paris Blue is like that.  And so much more.


A little like my first love, the intensity of Julie’s first love has an impact that sticks like glue to her life — in remarkable and enriching ways.


Thank you Julie for writing this brave memoir and sharing your story with us!


You will find Julie’s memoir on the Book Club page of my website

or just CLICK HERE to purchase Paris Blue, A Memoir of First Love.

You will be swept away.


Your Comments?

Tell Us About Your First Love?

Contribute your story where it says Leave a Comment

at the very bottom of the blog post.


Book Club Winners

Winner Of “The New Parisienne” by Lindsey Tramuta!



Congrats again to Helen Tally McRae from Decatur, Georgia

who won this book after Lindsey’s interview with me on  October 12th!

Thank you for the picture, Helen!

Always love to put a face to my readers and followers!


I do similar Giveaways at the end of every interview, along with 4 Substantial Giveaways every quarter to annual members.  One more to go this year which will be announced in later November!


Not an annual member yet?


CLICK HERE for more information — my 2022 Interview Series will be published soon.

It’s Not Too Late to Register

for this Week’s Interview!


Alison Browne in Paris


House Sitting in France and Beyond

My Conversation with Alison Browne

Tuesday, November 9th, 2021

12:30 EST/9:30 am Pacific/6:30 pm Paris/5:30 London  

CLICK HERE to Register

Alison Browne has found all sorts of creative ways

to travel through France and other parts of the world.

One is House Sitting where she has ended up in dreamy family homes

taking care of everything from

two chickens (Clara and Fluffy) to three donkeys.

Alison who now lives in Paris will take us on a personal tour

of these adventures while giving us tips on

how to find great House sitting opportunities.

Check out Alison’s website at Dreamer at 


Note: If you are an annual member of my interview series, you are already registered! Thank you to those who have already signed up too!

Note: I am a professional journalist and I search out only the most interesting and accomplished guests who agree to be interviewed based on my reputation.  For more information about the WOMEN OF GLOBAL INTEREST series and upcoming Guests, click HERE


  1. Gretchen Greene O'Brien on November 7, 2021 at 9:40 am

    Ahhh – what can compare with “first love” ! Most of us can remember that rare experience of (hopefully) finding our own True Love!!!

    • Diana Bishop on November 9, 2021 at 10:08 am

      And hopefully it was a good experience. In Julie’s memoir one is not so sure in the end. Thanks for the comment Gretchen! Diana

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