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Paris for One and Other Stories by [Jojo Moyes]
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Paris for One and Other Stories Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 787 ratings

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Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter One

Nell shifts her bag along the plastic seating in the station and checks the clock on the wall for the eighty-ninth time. Her gaze flicks back as the door from Security slides open. Another family-clearly Disney bound-walks through into the departure lounge, with baby stroller, screaming children, and parents who have been awake way too long.

For the last half hour, her heart has been thumping, a sick feeling high in her chest.

"He will come. He will still come. He can still make it," she mutters under her breath.

"Train 9051 to Paris will be leaving from Platform Two in ten minutes. Please make your way to the platform. Remember to take all luggage with you."

She chews her lip, then texts him again-the fifth time.

Where are you? Train about to leave!

She had texted him twice as she set off, checking that they were still meeting at the station. When he didn't answer, she told herself it was because she had been on the Underground. Or he had. She sends a third text, and a fourth. And then, as she stands there, her phone vibrates in her hand and she almost buckles with relief.

Sorry, babe. Stuck at work. Not going to make it.

As if they had planned to catch up over a quick drink. She stares at the phone in disbelief.

Not going to make this train? Shall I wait?

And, seconds later, the reply:

No, you go. Will try for later train.

She is too shocked to be angry. She stands still as people get to their feet around her, pulling on coats, and punches out a reply.

But where will we meet?

He doesn't answer. Stuck at work. It's a surf-and-scuba-wear shop. In November. How stuck can he be?

She gazes around her, as if this might still be a joke. As if he will, even now, burst through the doors with his broad smile, telling her that he was teasing her (he is a bit too fond of teasing her). And he will take her arm, kiss her cheek with wind-chilled lips, and say something like, "You didn't think I'd miss this, did you? Your first trip to Paris?"

But the glass doors stay firmly shut.

"Madam? You need to go to the platform." The Eurostar guard reaches for her ticket. And for a second she hesitates—will he come?—and then she is in the crowd, her little wheeled case trailing behind her. She stops and types:

Meet me at the hotel, then.

She heads down the escalator as the huge train roars into the station.


"What do you mean, you're not coming? We've planned this for ages." It is the annual Girls' Trip to Brighton. They have traveled there on the first weekend of November every year for six years—Nell, Magda, Trish, and Sue—piled into Sue's old four-wheel drive or Magda's company car. They would escape their daily lives for two nights of drinking, hanging out with the lads from stag weekends, and nursing hangovers over cooked breakfasts in a tatty hotel called Brightsea Lodge, its outside cracked and faded, the scent of its interior suffused with decades of drink and cheap aftershave.

The annual trip has survived two babies, one divorce, and a case of shingles (they spent the first night partying in Magda's hotel room instead). Nobody has ever missed one.

"Well, Pete's invited me to go to Paris."

"Pete is taking you to Paris?" Magda had stared at her as if she'd announced she was learning to speak Russian. "Pete Pete?"

"He says he can't believe I've never been."

"I went to Paris once, on a school trip. I got lost in the Louvre, and someone put my sneaker down a toilet in the youth hostel," said Trish.

"I snogged a French boy because he looked like that bloke who goes out with Halle Berry. Turned out he was actually German."

"Pete-with-the-hair Pete? Your Pete? I'm not trying to be mean. I just thought he was a bit of a . . ."

"Loser," said Sue helpfully.



"Obviously we're wrong. Turns out he's the kind of bloke who takes Nell on romantic weekends to Paris. Which is . . . you know. Great. I just wish it wasn't the same long weekend as our long weekend."

"Well, once we'd got the tickets . . . it was difficult. . . ." Nell mumbled with a wave of her hand, hoping nobody would ask who had actually purchased these tickets. (It had been the only weekend left before Christmas when the discount had applied.)

She had planned the trip as carefully as she organized her office paperwork. She had searched the Internet for the best places to go, scanning TripAdvisor for the best budget hotels, cross-checking each one on Google, and entering the results on a spreadsheet.

She had settled on a place behind the rue de Rivoli—"clean, friendly, very romantic"—and booked an "executive double room" for two nights. She pictured herself and Pete tangled up in a French hotel bed, gazing out the window at the Eiffel Tower, holding hands over croissants and coffee in some street café. She was only really going on pictures: she didn't have much idea what you did on a weekend in Paris, apart from the obvious.

At the age of twenty-six, Nell Simmons had never been away for a weekend with a boyfriend, unless you counted that time she went rock-climbing with Andrew Dinsmore. He had made them sleep in his Mini, and she woke up so cold that she couldn't move her neck for six hours.

Nell's mother, Lilian, was fond of telling anyone who would listen that Nell "was not the adventurous type." She was also "not the type to travel," "not the kind of girl who can rely on her looks," and now, occasionally, if her mother thought Nell was out of earshot, "no spring chicken."

That was the thing about growing up in a small town—everyone thought they knew exactly what you were. Nell was the sensible one. The quiet one. The one who would carefully research any plan and who could be trusted to water your plants, mind your kids, and not run off with anyone's husband.

No, Mother. What I really am, Nell thought as she printed off the tickets, gazing at them, then tucking them into a folder with all the important information, is the kind of girl who goes to Paris for the weekend.

As the big day grew nearer, she started to enjoy dropping it into conversation. "Got to make sure my passport is up-to-date," she said when she left her mother after Sunday lunch. She bought new underwear, shaved her legs, painted her toenails a vivid shade of red (she usually went for clear). "Don't forget I'm leaving early on Friday," she said at work. "You know. For Paris."

"Oh, you're so lucky," chorused the girls in Accounts.

"I'm well jell," said Trish, who disliked Pete slightly less than everyone else.


Nell climbs onto the train and stows her bag, wondering how "jell" Trish would be if she could see her now: a girl beside an empty seat going to Paris with no idea whether her boyfriend was even going to turn up. --This text refers to the paperback edition.


Praise for Paris for One and Other Stories:

“Moyes is in fine, cheeky form in this collection of short fiction, deploying the wit and charm that animates Me Before You and her other popular novels. The title novella offers a vicarious jolt of Parisian romance, while shorter stories deliver pithy insights into the joys and woes of marriage, ending with delightful twists.” --People

“An old-fashioned, feel-good love story. . .  ["Paris for One" is] as light as a French pastry. It will make you smile and even, maybe, sigh. It’s as if Moyes has booked a vacation and is taking us along. To Paris. Amour! . . . Think of these short fictions as palate cleansers after the sweet, tasty Parisian treat Moyes so deliciously serves up.” –USA Today

“Paris for One and Other Stories. . . [is]  dreamy escapism, a book you can curl up with and easily finish over a weekend, with or without a glass of wine.” –Miami Herald

"[A] charming novella. . . [and] a collection of short stories rounds out the work and adds up to an engaging way to spend fall's first chilly afternoon.”—Good Housekeeping

“These stories are a treat—quick, short nibbles of Moyes’ character genius, storytelling charisma, and writing grace, plus a new, intriguing format for the author, with the occasional surprising twist.” --Kirkus Reviews

"Vibrant. . .Bold, humorous and genuine, the stories in this collection are classic Moyes." Publishers Weekly

Praise for After You:

"Jojo Moyes has a hit with After You.USA Today

“Think Elizabeth Bennet after Darcy’s eventual death; Alice after Gertrude; Wilbur after Charlotte. The 'aftermath' is a subject most writers understandably avoid, but Moyes has tackled it and given readers an affecting, even entertaining female adventure tale about a broken heroine who ultimately rouses herself and falls in love again, this time with the possibilities in her own future..”Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air, NPR 

“The genius of Moyes . . . [is that she] peers deftly into class issues, social mores, and complicated relationships that raise as many questions as they answer. And yet there is always resolution. It’s not always easy, it’s not always perfect, it’s sometimes messy and not completely satisfying. But sometimes it is.” —Bobbi Dumas,


“Expect tears and belly laughs from Me Before You’s much anticipated sequel.” Cosmopolitan

“Moyes is at her most charming here, writing with a sense of humorous affection about family dynamics among working-class Brits. . . a Maeve Binchy for the 21st century.” —Kirkus Reviews

“[A] heart-tugger.” Good Housekeeping

“Like its predecessor [Me Before You], After You is a comic and breezy novel that also tackles bigger, more difficult subjects, in this case grief and moving on. . . . We all lose what we love at some point, but in her poignant, funny way, Moyes reminds us that even if it’s not always happy, there is an ever after.” —Miami Herald

“Once again, Moyes delivers a heart-wrenching and relatable book about love and loss that will stay with you long after you’ve finished.”
“Moyes wisely knows that life-changing events don’t always change our lives for the better. . . . After You may not be the sequel you expect, but it is the sequel you needed.” —Entertainment Weekly
After You is an immersive experience, inviting readers back into the homes of the characters they fell in love with in Me Before You. They’ll experience the mourning that follows a devastating loss, and the glimmers of hope that propel the brokenhearted forward.” —BookPage  
“[After You] left me thrilled by the possibilities of fiction to entertain and inform, and astounded by [Moyes’s] deep well of talent and imagination.” —Bask magazine

Praise for Me Before You:

“A hilarious, heartbreaking, riveting novel . . . I will stake my reputation on this book.” —Anne Lamott, People

“When I finished this novel, I didn’t want to review it: I wanted to reread it. . . . An affair to remember.” The New York Times Book Review

“An unlikely love story . . . To be devoured like candy, between tears.” O, The Oprah Magazine

“Funny and moving but never predictable.” USA Today (four stars)

“Masterful . . . a heartbreaker in the best sense . . . Me Before You is achingly hard to read at moments, and yet such a joy.” New York Daily News

Praise for One Plus One:

“Safety advisory: If you’re planning to read Jojo Moyes’s One Plus One on your summer vacation, slather on plenty of SPF 50. Once you start the book, you probably won’t look up again until you’re the last one left on the beach. . . . [A] wonderful new novel.” The Washington Post

“Jojo Moyes’ new novel One Plus One adds up to a delightful summer read, where the whole is greater than the sum of its charming parts. . . . Moyes’ observations on modern life are dryly hilarious. . . . You don’t need to be a math whiz to figure out this book is one worth adding to your summer reading list.” USA Today (four stars)

“Bridget Jones meets Little Miss Sunshine in this witty British romp from bestseller Moyes. . . . Wryly romantic and surprisingly suspenseful.” People

“Fans of the 2006 summer sleeper hit Little Miss Sunshine will find a lot to love in British author Jojo Moyes’ latest, about a madcap road trip that’s packed to the boot with familial drama, class clashes, and romance.” Entertainment Weekly (A-)

“No need to worry where this road trip is headed. Just sit back, roll down your window and enjoy being a passenger.” Cleveland Plain Dealer --This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B01COJUFKE
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Penguin Books; Reprint edition (Oct. 18 2016)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 8966 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 278 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 787 ratings

Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
787 global ratings
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Top reviews from other countries

5.0 out of 5 stars Such a clever writer!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 13, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Restore your faith in love, with Paris for One.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 21, 2020
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Mrs. D. J. Rugg
5.0 out of 5 stars loved it
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 12, 2017
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4 people found this helpful
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Richard Stewart-Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars What a change !
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 4, 2020
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J R. Winfield
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 16, 2018
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3 people found this helpful
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