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Getting in the mood for France -- recommendations for fiction or non-fiction?

Getting in the mood for France -- recommendations for fiction or non-fiction?

Feb 17th, 2003, 02:02 PM
  #1  
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Getting in the mood for France -- recommendations for fiction or non-fiction?

We are in the beginning stages of planning our first visit to France (some Paris and some outside Paris). Does anyone have suggestions for good books to read to get some background information and just, in general, set the mood?
Jeannie is offline  
Feb 17th, 2003, 02:15 PM
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That's a broad question because for planning a trip, I think you should get a good guidebook for background info-- the Michelin Green Guides, for example, are ones I always use for different regions of France to decide on what is worth seeing and history. Of course, there are many guidebooks and tons for Paris.

IN a broader sense, I'll suggest a few nonfiction: "The Road from the Past, Traveling through History in France" by Ina Caro; "Portraits of France" by Robert Daley; and for a quick, easy start, the Traveller's tales series is very enjoyable (they have one both for Paris alone and France).

Perhaps you weren't aware, but this question has been asked a lot on here and there are several very long and detailed threads with good recommendations. I made others on there, I'm sure, but suggest you look for it to get the best list. Simply search for "fiction" within France or something, that should do it.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 02:17 PM
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Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik. Peter Mayles first book about the Provence (A Year in the Provence?); the second one is just milking the success of the first. But the novel set in the Provence (I don't recall the name) is very funny.
 
Feb 17th, 2003, 02:24 PM
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If your interested in World War II you should read, "Is Paris Burning?" I don't remember the author.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 02:27 PM
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Jean Francois Revel.

He's not a US/West hating monkey like the rest.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 02:34 PM
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If you visit the area of the lot valley, a new book; "From Here You Can't see Paris"."
"two towns in Provence"by one of my fav writers MFK Fisher,
Brittany, Ä horse of Pride"."
"Normandy, "Ruë Tatin"
The Auvergne, "The Uplands" by Merwin,



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Feb 17th, 2003, 02:44 PM
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A Garden in Provence; anything by Joanne Harris, especially Chocolat; A Tale of Two Cities. Living in a Postcard.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 02:58 PM
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"window on Provence
""The Fly Truffler",
My mother's castle, my father's glory both books by the wonderful Pagnol whose books have all been made into films.
His earlier ones were "fanny"and "the Baker's Wife"
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Feb 17th, 2003, 03:28 PM
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I just read On Rue Tatin, and it really put me in the right frame of mind for my April trip to France.- Not that I really needed any help!!!
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Feb 17th, 2003, 03:46 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions so far. I apologize -- I should have specified that I would also get the usual travel books to help with the specific planning of the trip.

I'll also check the other postings as you suggested, Christina.
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Feb 17th, 2003, 03:57 PM
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I also recommend anything by MFK Fisher. She is truely one of the most underrated authors in the world of letters. In my opinion, she has the capability of transporting you, giving you an insight into the place she is writing about as few writers can do on that level (Isaak Dinesen is another). When she writes about the food of Provence, you actually tastes the meal!
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Feb 17th, 2003, 04:12 PM
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cmt
 
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I posted this on the wrong thread, so will re-post here:

Message: Here's a thread re fiction set in Paris:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessages.jsp?fid=2&tid=1322612&numresponses=24&s tart=0&searchText=paris+fiction

I thought there was also one about novels set in France, generally, but I can't find it. There are some threads re French movies and movies set in France. Some of the movies are based on novels, so that may be a way to foind some more titles. There is also a thread from lst summer started by Sheila Ritchie re novels set in Brittany. If that area interests you, you might be able to find the thread by searching Sheila's ID or by searching for Brittany.


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Feb 17th, 2003, 05:11 PM
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john'has suggested one of my favorite writers MFK Fisher. here's a few:
Two Towns in Provence(Aix and Marseille,
Long ago in France,
The Boss dog.
As we Were,
To begin Again.
cigalechanta is offline  
Feb 18th, 2003, 05:28 AM
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I was glad to see Window on Provence, by Bo Niles, on your list, Mimi.

Also recommend, all non-fiction:

A House in France, Ann Barry (single, professional woman who buys house in France and proves that it can be enjoyably done with only getting there during vacations; I subsequently saw her obit in NYT; died at 52)
Running in Place: Scenes from the South of France, Delbanco
Miles Away, Miles Moreland (story of his and his wife's trek across France)
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