The Paris Architect

  • by Charles Belfoure
  • Narrated by Mark Bramhall
  • 11 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Like most gentiles in Nazi-occupied Paris, architect Lucien Bernard has little empathy for the Jews. So when a wealthy industrialist offers him a large sum of money to devise secret hiding places for Jews, Lucien struggles with the choice of risking his life for a cause he doesn't really believe in. Ultimately he can't resist the challenge and begins designing expertly concealed hiding spaces - behind a painting, within a column, or inside a drainpipe - detecting possibilities invisible to the average eye. But when one of his clever hiding spaces fails horribly and the immense suffering of Jews becomes incredibly personal, he can no longer deny reality.
Written by an expert whose knowledge imbues every word, this story becomes more gripping with every life the architect tries to save.


What the Critics Say

"Words like "riveting" and "compelling" aren't strong enough to describe this remarkable novel narrated by Mark Bramhall and set in Nazi-occupied Paris in 1942." (AudioFile)
"A beautiful and elegant account of an ordinary man's unexpected and reluctant descent into heroism during the second world war." (Malcolm Gladwell)
"Belfoure writes like an up-and-coming Ken Follett ... There's plenty of detail to interest architecture buffs, too." (Booklist)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


I couldn't put this book down. Characters were believable and interesting. Plot was great, with some twists and turns. Captured the feeling of France during the German occupation of Paris during World War, and the question of how people behave in terrible circumstances.
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- C. B. Schindel

Absolutely Wonderful!!

I couldn't stop listening to the book. I've read and listened to many Nazi-era books and find this to be one of the best. In fact, anyone who likes Sarah's Key or Those Who Saved Us will also love this one.

The premise of the book--saving Jews in architecturally designed structures--is intriguing. The author somehow balanced the horrors of the era with happiness. His characters conveyed the best and worst parts of people. Paris and all its glory played a strong part in the book.

I found the author fabulous! He added to the quality of the book do I'm glad I listened to it rather than read it. He did a great job with different genders, ages, and nationalities.

I loved this book so much that I'm sad it has ended!
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- Wandering Hoosier

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-08-2013
  • Publisher: Random House Audio