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We'll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Memoir Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 172 customer reviews

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Length: 397 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I'm profoundly in love with Jennifer Coburn's memoir We'll Always Have Paris! From Coburn's picture-perfect travelogue to her hilarious observations, she's woven together a powerful narrative with a heartfelt and thoughtful examination of what truly makes a family. I was enthralled from the very first page and I cannot recommend this book highly enough. I want to read this again, tell all my friends about it... and then renew my passport." - Jen Lancaster, NYT bestselling author of Bitter is the New Black, The Tao of Martha, and Here I Go Again

"This book touched me in a profound way. I lost my beloved father a short time ago and I have been ruminating about all the trips we never took together. Before my sisters and I were born, he traveled the world and regaled us with tales all through our childhood. We planned to see many of those same places together, but fate intervened in the form of marriage and a child of my own. In the end I can say that I am grateful that we shared so much time together and that his stories will always live on in me. Thank you Jennifer." - Cayocosta72

"We'll Always Have Paris reads like a sweet stroll through Europe with a funny friend who shares touching stories of her parent-child relationships. A great escape." - Janice MacLeod, author of Paris Letters

"We'll Always Have Paris is simply brimming with joie de vivre! From the very moment I embarked on Jennifer Coburn's delicious Paris memoir, I wanted to travel back in time to when my own daughter was eight years old, take her by the hand, and bring her to Paris for the adventure of a lifetime. Well, until I have a granddaughter, I have the next best thing--Jennifer Coburn's gorgeous story of love, family and the ties that bind. I am recommending this to all my friends and family and especially to my own daughter. It's simply fantastique!" - Jamie Cat Callan, author of Ooh La La! French Women's Secrets to Feeling Beautiful Every Day

"Jennifer Coburn's We'll Always Have Paris takes us on two journeys. One is a trés entertaining mother/daughter travel tale in which Coburn brings their evolving relationship, and Europe, to life with such vibrance, humor and insight, it made us want to pack our bags and hit the road again tomorrow. She also takes us on an internal journey chronicling her deep love and longing for the adored hippie/musician father she lost to cancer as a teen. In passages powerful, tender and funny - often in one sentence - Coburn proves as adept at describing the terrain of the human heart as she does the gardens of Alcazar or the streets of Paris." - Claire and Mia Fontaine, authors of the bestselling Comeback and Have Mother, Will Travel

"We'll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Adventure is a funny, honest, sometimes kooky memoir by San Diegan Jennifer Coburn...to read the book is to experience Europe anew, and relive all the wonder that travel brings." - San Diego Magazine

"Jennifer's narration of their adventures is laugh-out-loud funny, warm and touching-I thought of Nora Ephron and Anna Quindlen." - Presidio Sentinel

"This poignant and very funny memoir chronicles their summers in cities like Paris, London, Barcelona and Amsterdam, where they overcome fears and challenges, journey off the beaten path and make mother-daughter memories that will last a lifetime – however long or short that may be." - Midlife at the Oasis

"What made the book especially riveting, though, is how Coburn interweaves the tales of their travels with memories of her late father. She deftly ties in themes from their experiences to memories from her childhood, and I marveled at how skilfully she wove together the joyful and the difficult strands of her past.

I shut the book and began dreaming about where I'd love to take my kids." - 4 Mothers 1 Blog

"As a memoir, Jennifer Coburn's book works beautifully – not maudlin, no mere recitation of places and faces – this is 391 pages of thoughtful travel." - My French Life

"Whether you have an undying need to see all of Europe, are a mother longing to recreate treasured memories with your kids, or just love Jennifer Coburn as much as we do, this book is a must read. With summer creeping slowly in, this is the perfect time to grab a copy, read it tonight and start planning your own epic trip...his book will sing to your soul." - Chick Lit and Wine

"We'll Always Have Paris is a thoroughly enjoyable read for both those who love travel and those who enjoy a good mother/daughter story. Be forewarned though that before you have closed the book on the final page, you will be planning a European adventure of your own." - Gone With the Family

"It's very much like listening to your best friend tell you her tale of her bad vacation!...This is a wonderful Spring read and it will definitely get you off to the computer and starting to plan a trip!" - Bless Their Hearts Mom

"Anyone who has lost a parent will relate to Jennifer's years-long process of coming to terms with it and perhaps her trips with her daughter will inspire those who would love to do the same. " - 5 Minutes for Mom

"We'll Always Have Paris does a good job of exploring how one woman deals with the death of her parent and the trauma associated with it, as well it does an excellent job of illustrating the magic of traveling together as a family and how it can strengthen bonds and bring parents closer to their children." - Words of Mystery

"If you are looking forward to traveling with your daughter, the book is a great point of reference, about enjoying the NOW while traveling, and not being too regimented!...This is a wonderful Spring read and it will definitely get you off to the computer and starting to plan a trip!" - Bless Their Hearts Mom

"I read We'll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Memoir in just a few days. It was a great story, written from a mother's perspective after taking her daughter to Paris and many other European cities, including London, Rome, Salerno, Florence, Venice, Madrid, Seville, Granada, Barcelona, and Amsterdam, over the course of several years and in more than three separate trips." - Happy Healthy Hip Parenting

"Coburn has a light-hearted style, quick wit and beautiful descriptive voice, which makes We'll Always Have Paris a fun and easy read." - San Diego Metro

"Hilarious and heartwarming experiences with her daughter, interwoven with memoirs of her own colorful past reveal a mother's quest for reconciliation and the link between generations." - Vancouver Family Magazine

"For fans of non-fiction, for people who love a good travel story, for someone looking for a touching memoir- give We'll Always Have Paris a try!" - Traveling with T

"I especially enjoyed reading this book and laughing out loud with no care in the world. This book is thoroughly entertaining and even though I do not personally know Ms. Coburn, I feel like I connected with her. My desire as a mother to travel and have my daughters experience the different cultures around the world is high on my list." - Opera Singer in the Kitchen

"This book is a lovely exploration of the effects that travel has on life and relationships and the joy of sharing travel with a loved one...This is the type of book that you close with a smile and look forward to picking back up again in the future. I highly recommend it! " - Growing My Kids

"The tone and style of this memoir is so comfortable, relaxed, honest, raw and beautiful that words themselves feel elusive to grasp the very heart of this MUST read book. The reader is touched not only by each step of this heart-warming story that shows this author's best writing to date. Highly recommended!" - Crystal Book Review

"Part travelogue and part touching memoir, this book is perfect for readers who enjoyed Judith Fein's Life Is a Trip; ¬Jennifer Baggett and others' The Lost Girls; or any of the volumes in the "Best Women's Travel Writing" series... A book for all readers, but especially mothers and daughters, this fun, inspiring, and spirited journey will have you scrambling for your passport and calling your mom just to say, "I love you."" - Library Journal-STARRED

"Jennifer and Katie's journey is honest, heart-warming, and absolutely sweet. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of their mommy-daughter adventures together through Europe (and their own relationship). It is such an easy read, true and relatable, and Coburn is honest about even the most mortifying personal hang-ups that we all have but don't always like to admit to." - The (Mis)Adventures of Mamakujo

"Wonderful and charming–you will LOVE this one!" - Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke

"Jennifer reminds me of one of my funniest friends, the one you always want to sit next to at a dinner party, and her stories warmed my heart. I especially enjoyed reading as she questioned the challenges of parenting and carefully navigated the line between mom and friend. You'll want to buckle up and enjoy the ride as Katie matures and Jennifer learns to go with the flow." - http://www.globetrottingmommy.com/well-always-have-paris-review-guest-post-jennifer-coburn/

"Heartwarming story filled with adventure and humor! One of the best books I have read in a long time!" - SoCal City Kids

"A must-read memoir...The story is engaging because she's just like us, making silly tourist mistakes, facing her fears of leaving the hotel room & getting lost. In fact, the book is really funny & I'm enjoying it immensely. " - Spokesmama

"Infused with wit, incredible descriptions, amazing art, and heart-warming and heart-rending tales of Jennifer Coburn's childhood, We'll Always Have Paris is a must-read for anyone who has loved and lost a parent (that's me), loved and treasured a daughter (that's me), or just wants to share in the duo's quest for happiness, connection, and new experiences." - Be Nice Or Leave

"On the journey of learning to let go of her fear of dying, and learning to live life as it comes, Jennifer begins to get a better sense of who her daughter is becoming. Through jet lag and motion sickness, being lost and getting found, through explorations and adventures, pictures and sketches, museums, beaches and cafés, she is learning that although things may not be perfect all the time, they as are they need to be." - One Crazy Kid

"We'll Always Have Paris has me pondering where I can take my daughter next, what fun things we'll learn and the laughs we'll share while on our travels. I can't wait!" - Flattlands Travel Blog

"We'll Always Have Paris is Jennifer's story of their travels across Europe. It's part travelogue, part memoir, and part tip book told in the same conversational tone you use when chatting with your best friend. " - San Antonio Mom Blogs

"The book "We'll Always Have Paris" is a heart-warming book mingled with hilarious observations of life. Pick up your own copy for a relaxing Summer read." - Akron Ohio Moms

"We'll Always Have Paris is a book we can all relate to. The book celebrates the joys of life and discoveries, the little stumbling blocks we find here and there, the tragedy and realization of mortality that we all must face and the spirit to find our way through and survive. The overall message encourages us to seize the moment yet savor the time we are with those we love. " - Two Moms a Little Time and a Keyboard

"This is a great book for anyone who's even thought about travel with their parents or children abroad. " - Two Savvy Sisters

"Jennifer Coburn's book, We'll Always Have Paris, takes my dream and turns it into a reality... It's all about letting go of the fear and fully living. A very valuable lesson I want to impart on my girls in many ways." - The Mummy Chronicles

"I love the bond that these trips have created between this mother and daughter and reading about their adventures together really makes me want to book a trip with my mother right now!" - Lipstick and Leopard Print

"A touching, heartwarming memoir, that brought out loud laughter at some points when I was reading it. This book will always remain in my library.
" - New Age Mama

"We'll Always Have Paris by Jennifer Coburn was a breeze to read with a scattering of amusing passages similar to Bill Bryson's travel antics. " - Amateur Traveler

"Jennifer does a beautiful job of of developing the "characters" in her book, which include her own family and the people she and her daughter come across in the many places they visit. She also gives the reader a good sense of each European city they venture into, including the sites, culture and architecture." - The Miss Elaine-ous Life

"The book is more than just a travel narrative; providing evocative descriptions of sights and sounds, but also shows how Mother and Daughter both grow and learn as individuals as a result of their travels, as well as how Mother and Daughter grow their relationship as a result of their travels." - Our Oyster

"I really loved how Coburn was able to tie in what she was experiencing with her daughter with what memories she had of her father. I really want to know more about her father's life and more about her travels through Europe." - Jennie Talks

"Jennifer Coburn and Katie are having the times of their lives in WE'LL ALWAYS HAVE PARIS. And they bring us all along to share the fun...A great book to tuck into your beach bag, or in your tote bag for the plane. Don't miss it. " - Maurice on Books

"I love the author's blunt tales of her own experience but the truth of her past as well. I found the book to be very funny and amusing. Just the right book to prepare me for overseas travel." - The Autodidact Scholar

"A story of a woman reflecting on family, memories, her ability to embrace life and the present. A travelogue of sorts of a mother and daughter sharing time, both growing and letting go." - The Discerning Reader

" The writing is intimate and accessible; it's like listening to a friend tell you the story of her European vacation." - BookNAround

"A fun, escapist read...I recommend it to others that love travel memoirs!" - Lisa's Yarns

"We'll Always Have Paris is a hilarious, wacky, and terribly moving memoir about a mother and daughter traveling the world together in the face of their inherent mortality." - Mommy Needs Vodka

"We'll Always Have Paris is a true gem that should be cherished by every mother, read to your daughter and remembered for years to come." - Bookish

"Recommended for anyone considering traveling overseas with children, armchair travelers, world travelers, people who love a good read." - Recipe Renovator

"If you like the kind of sentimental journey a memoir can take you on, then you will love this book. Jennifer Coburn balances heavy doses of sentimentality with a certain Charles Bukowski edge, alternating between poignant moments of reflection and frank moments of confession. Humorous and heartbreaking at once, We'll Always Have Paris explores, analyzes, and evaluates the relationship the narrator had with her parents in comparison with the relationship she is having with her very own daughter thirty-some odd years later." - Me Read A Lot

About the Author

Jennifer Coburn is a USA Today best selling author of six novels and contributor to four literary anthologies. Over the past two decades, Coburn has received numerous awards from the Press Club and Society for Professional Journalists for articles that appeared in Mothering, Big Apple Baby, The Miami Herald, The San Diego Union-Tribune and dozens of national and regional publications. She has also written for Salon.com, Creators News Syndicate and The Huffington Post. Coburn lives in San Diego with her husband, William, and their daughter, Katie. We'll Always Have Paris is her first memoir.

Jennifer Coburn is a USA Today best selling author of six novels and contributor to four literary anthologies. Over the past two decades, Coburn has received numerous awards from the Press Club and Society for Professional Journalists for articles that appeared in Mothering, Big Apple Baby, The Miami Herald, The San Diego Union-Tribune and dozens of national and regional publications. She has also written for Salon.com, Creators News Syndicate and The Huffington Post. Coburn lives in San Diego with her husband, William, and their daughter, Katie. We'll Always Have Paris is her first memoir.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2134 KB
  • Print Length: 397 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks (April 8, 2014)
  • Publication Date: April 8, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00HFDVOHI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #106,331 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Jennifer Coburn, you had me at "Paris."

In the introduction to this engaging memoir, Jennifer remarks that she has "never heard anyone talk about Paris without sighing." I'm no exception. As a francophile and lover of memoir, I was delighted to receive an advance review copy.

Jennifer was still in her teens when she lost her father, and, she writes, has spent her adulthood "checking my rear-view mirror to see if the Grim Reaper is tailgaiting." Despite excellent health, she was convinced she too would die young, so was determined to jam-pack her daughter Katie's mental scrapbook with beautiful mother-daughter memories.

To that end, she and her daughter spent several summer vacations traveling overseas. I suspect many of us will recognize ourselves in this description: "I don't need to be this happy at once, I thought. Can't I save some for later? A better part of me admonished that I should enjoy the experience now and stop searching for life's doggie bags."

In thoughtful, frequently hilarious detail, Jennifer writes about letting go of that fear of death and learning how to enjoy her life. "Katie instinctively knew what I had struggled my entire life to grasp," she says. "And I still hadn't gotten it. Eluding me was the ability to focus on what I had, rather than what I had lost or could lose."

A meditation on the meaning of family and memory, this funny, poignant memoir will have you reaching for your own passport.
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Format: Paperback
I can’t resist any book that has “Paris” in the title. Having done much travel with my children, I was especially intrigued by the book’s subtitle, “A Mother/Daughter Adventure”. This sounded like it was right up my alley.

So, why didn’t I care for this book?

Because it tries too hard to be too many things. Only half of the book is a travelogue. The other half is a tale of regret as the younger version of the author recalls watching her father die of cancer.

Hmmm. I get the concept, but it falls short. Left in fear of death after watching her father die too young, Coburn wants to pack in as many memories as she can with her young daughter. She tries to weave together her current travel experiences with a memory of her father that is triggered by them. Most of the time, the trigger is fluid. That’s not my problem with it.

My problem is that when I expected to read a travel memoir, I thought I would be reading details about the places they’d been to, the nuances of culture shock, and get a sense that I was there experiencing it with them. The details, instead, were sparse, and seemed to serve more as vehicles back to the father storyline. That’s too bad, because what the author wrote about her mother/daughter travels, she wrote very well, and could undoubtedly have written a whole book merely about that experience.

So, as a travel memoir, it fell short. And, as a reminiscence of the death of her father, it fell short. The book was trying to be both. The author is skilled writer, and could have written two books equally well.
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By KC on April 8, 2014
Format: Paperback
I loved Coburn's memoir about "dragging" her daughter Katie through Paris and other parts of Europe. I too am a bit paranoid about being struck down too soon, so I could relate to the urgency she felt in giving Katie the best possible well-rounded childhood she could. Enjoyed their journey and the courage it took to take a then-8 year old on such an adventure. Fortunately, neither Jennifer nor her daughter were simpering Americans longing for cheeseburgers! They embraced the European cultures with great aplomb, language barrier be damned. (Perhaps her husband should also get a nod/shout out for holding down the fort while his wife and daughter did their globetrotting. What a guy!) For me what really gave the story traction was her memories of her father, and the "journey" of losing him. It was poignant and profound. You should read this book.
~KC
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I chose this book because my adult daughter and I took several trips to Europe to some of the same countries that the mother and daughter in this book also visited. I was reminded of the great time my daughter and I had when we visited some of the same tourist sites, but I was disappointed that WE’LL ALWAYS HAVE PARIS had no binding plot, very little drama, and no intriguing conflict. It read more like a combination of a well written journal and travelogue with alternating chapters of memories of stories of the mother’s early life triggered by things that happened on their trips to Europe. The daughter was extremely mature for an eight year old and the mother was an insecure but good mother. The role reversal was interesting as over the years of traveling together the mother began to mature and understand the true purpose of life.
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Format: Kindle Edition
“This heartwarming story of a mother-daughter journey through Europe is a sweet and funny adventure that is a fun and inspirational read. “We’ll Always Have Paris” is a glimpse into a unique relationship written from the eyes of two generations. It makes you laugh, smile and admire these two kooky real-life folks who do it their way. Better yet, Jennifer Coburn’s story makes me want to pack up my bag... and my daughter… and hit the road to make similar memories. I am recommending this book to all of my friends and family. This is a “feel-good” must read!”

-Karen Ronney, author of Proud Parents’ Guide to Raising Athletic, Balanced, and Coordinated Kids: A Lifetime of Benefit in Just 10 Minutes A Day
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