Header image with four cats and the text: Pussreboots, a book review nearly every day. Online since 1997
Now 2024 Previous Articles Road Essays Road Reviews Author Black Authors Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA+ Artwork WIP

Recent posts

Month in review

All Aboard the Dinotrain by Deb Lund
Are You Afraid Yet? by Stephen James O'Meara
Bailey's Day by Robert Haggerty
A Brief History of Time by Shaindel Beers
Cat Heaven by Cynthia Rylant
Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel García Márquez
A Dark, Dark Tale by Ruth Brown
Dead End by Helen R. Myers
Dreamstone by D. A. Hendrickson
The Electric Church by Jeff Somers
The Essential Basho by Basho and translated by Sam Hamill
Excuse Me... Are You a Witch? by Emily Horn
Farewell Atlantis by Terry Bisson
Freckle Juice by Judy Blume
Grampa's Zombie BBQ by Kirk Scraggs
The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry
How to Host a Killer Party by Penny Warner
The Kayla Chroincles by Sherri Winston
The Ladies' Paradise by Émile Zola
Little (Grrl) Lost by Charles de Lint
Little Quack's Hide and Seek by Lauren Thompson
The Man Who Did Something About It by Harvey Jacobs
Owly Volume 1: The Way Home and The Bittersweet Summer by Andy Runton
Princess Ben by Catherine Gilbert Murdock
Revolutionary War on Wednesday (Magic Tree House #22) by Mary Pope Osborne
The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan
The Soul of the Rhino by Hemanta Mishra
Spot Visits His Grandparents by Eric Hill
The Texicans by Nina Vida
The Thanksgiving Door by Debby Atwell
Twister on Tuesday (Magic Tree House #23) by Mary Pope Osborne
Two Little Trains by Margaret Wise Brown and Leo Dillon
The Wolves in the Walls by Neil Gaiman
Veracity by Laura Bynum

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Canadian Book Challenge: 2024-2025

Beat the Backlist 2024

Ozathon: 12/2023-01/2025

Chicken Prints
Paintings and Postcards

Privacy policy

This blog does not collect personal data. It doesn't set cookies. Email addresses are used to respond to comments or "contact us" messages and then deleted.

The Ladies' Paradise: 06/24/10

cover art

When I think of Émile Zola, I think of long drives through Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. He was one of my go-to authors for the long summer camping trips. It's been two decades since my last family trip but I've been trying to get back into the groove with Zola. I had some success with The Earth. I wish I could say the same for The Ladies' Paradise.

The Ladies Paradise takes place in Paris at the time when city is modernizing and gearing up for the 20th century. A young woman and her brothers come to live with an uncle who runs a small dress store. He's scared by modernization or maybe he can't afford to upgrade. Whatever the reason, it's impetus for his niece to seek employment at the Ladies' Paradise, a brand new department store.

As many of the other reviewers note, the department store is the main character of the novel. It's like a Macy's or similar but it's affect on the smaller stores is more like a Wallmart. In this regard the book reminds me of The Jungle and Sister Carrie (where Chicago is presented as a character).

I really wanted to connect with the novel but I didn't. Maybe I need those long drives through picturesque landscapes to get into a Zola mood. Maybe I just need less distractions. Here I felt like I couldn't find the right pace to read the book. I got through about two-thirds of it with out feeling the spark I needed to keep going.

Comments (2)

Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:

Comment #1: Friday, June, 25, 2010 at 11:40:00


Sorry it was bland for you... I looked it up and thought it sounded delightful. Maybe it is an acquired taste.

Comment #2: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 at 11:28:14


Frankly I was suprised that I didn't love the book. I have loved every other Zola book I've read. I think I was just too preoccupied with other things to devote the time needed to read it properly.

Twitter Tumblr Mastadon Flickr Facebook Facebook Contact me

1997-2024 Sarah Sammis