To Capture What We Cannot Keep by Beatrice Colin
A love story that feels like you are dancing on water, although no one is there to see, and that’s rather how you prefer it.
I don’t remember why this novel entered my life, but I am glad that the past had transpired in order for it to be so.
I borrowed this book from overdrive towards the beginning of January. I go to University in Michigan, so it should have been snowing out, but it wasn’t. I felt duped, so reading a book taking place in Paris, in the winter, felt like I was taking back my own promised cold season.
The writing was so pretty. I felt calm and easily felt comfortable in the shoes of one of our main point’s of view, Caitriona Wallace. She is middle aged, but aged well, a widow who agrees to chaperone two wealthy children as they go on a grand tour of Europe. We start the book in Paris, where we meet our other point of view, Émile Nouguier, an architect currently working to build the Eiffel Tower. The rest of the novel we flip back and forth learning the unfortunate circumstances and heavy pasts of the pair as they decide to go forth with their love or stay in tune with what is expected from society..as well as their friends and family.
This love story is slow, it is messy, it truthfully didn’t give me everything I wanted, and on top of that there is still so much focus on unimportant things like balls they cannot attend together and long nights thinking of the night they met, almost wishing it never happened.
This book is the opposite of intense. It is like a drunk, lazy, lullaby. Showing the reader a glimpse into the lives of two ordinary people whose wishes are against society.
And I thoroughly enjoyed it.
I do have a few complaints, but they are simply personal pins in my seat.
Mainly, the two charges Cait is responsible for are awful. For two young adults in a time where maturity is expected at a much younger age than today, they act like children! And no one ever, not once, puts them in their place. Everyone kind of expects they to grow out of it, or wants to let them be naive, which does no good! I’ll say that much. I just wish someone were to shake them and tell them to grow up! There were multiple opportunities throughout the novel and not once did anyone truly help them. And in the end I feel they were just as broken as any other character we had met along the way.
This novel was a bit of a wake up call I believe.
I gave it: ★★★☆☆
Which is a lovely rating when it comes to my personal scale.
Check it out on Goodreads!
Overall, To Capture What We Cannot Keep is dark and beautiful..but leaves you with hope and a small fuzzy feeling in your chest that I like to call The End.