Best Books Set in Paris: Novels, Memoirs, Biographies and More

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Best Books Set in Paris: Novels, Memoirs, Biographies and More
Another day, another great book comes out about Paris. Or so it seems. The City of Light fuels an endless literary appetite. We are seemingly fascinated with this city like no other, and dozens of books fly off the shelves to feed the need. Not to mention the importance of the city as a source of inspiration to expat writers—from James Fenimore Cooper to Gertrude Stein. This rich literary tradition continues today, with a slew of impressive expat writers taking up residence in Paris. Recent picks Bonjour Paris is lucky to review a number of Paris books. Below is a frequently-updated list of recent volumes (and advance copies) that have crossed our desks. Lauren Elkin’s fabulous Flâneuse, Women Walk the City in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Venice and London. This wonderful volume has been listed as a best book of 2017 by multiple critics.   When in French: Love in a Second Language by New Yorker columnist Lauren Collins. We highly recommend this excellent book.  A Taste of Paris: A History of the Parisian Love Affair with Food by David Downie. The Mistress of Paris, a fascinating biography by Catherine Hewitt about “the 19th century courtesan who built an empire on a secret.” City of Noise, professor Aimée Boutin’s insightful study of historic Parisian soundscapes.  The Streets of Paris, Susan Cahill’s guide to the City of Light following in the footsteps of 22 famous Parisians throughout history. Say our colleagues at France Today magazine: “Let yourself be guided through history along Paris’s sweeping avenues and tapered passages, with the odd pitstop in the capital’s coveted patisseries!”   A Paris Year, an illustrated journal and city guide by Janice MacLeod. The author built up a following with her “Paris Letters”– a fun subscription service featuring painted letters about life in Paris. This is her second book.  The Bonjour Effect, The Secret Codes of French Conversation Revealed by Julie Barlow & Jean-Benoît Nadeau. This is the latest book by the award-winning authors of the international bestseller Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong.  Murder on the Quai by Cara Black, the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of 16 books in the Aimée Leduc mystery series, all set in Paris.  The Light of Paris by Eleanor Brown– a novel she was inspired to write when she discovered a stash of letters written by her grandmother as a young woman in Paris.  The Novel of the Century: The Extraordinary Adventure of Les Misérables by David Bellos.  Lindsey Tramuta’s buzzed-about The New Paris: The People, Places and Ideas Fueling a Movement. There’s a dynamic new energy in the City of Light, and journalist Tramuta has mapped out this exciting scene.  Doorways of Paris by Raquel Puig, the Parisian woman who’s behind the Instagram account “Doorways of Paris.” Peruse the photographs and discover “the most beautiful city in the world through its doors.” The Pilot by Ed Cobleigh, a BP contributor Miracle at Midlife: A Transatlantic Romance by Roni Beth Tower, a BP contributor. Last Christmas in Paris: A Novel of World War One by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb. A romantic novel set during the Great War. Our reader’s…

Lead photo credit : "The Greater Journey" by David McCullough

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  • Aida La Brutte
    2017-12-08 11:05:32
    Aida La Brutte
    Thank you for this wonderful list of books about Paris. I've read some of these, and I've put others on my "must read" list. I'd like to recommend, "Paris to the Moon," by Adam Gopnik, Random House 2008. A wonderful Paris "memoir" by an American journalist.