I cannot write a word this week without mentioning the attacks on one of my favorite cities, Paris. People around the world are expressing sadness, even anger, about what happened, but I feel that bringing back wonderful memories of trips there, and re-reading the best books about the City of Light, might be helpful. Three books immediately come to mind. If you have others, please leave us a comment, so we can expand the list.
The first book is one I read years ago, and I have been referencing it ever since. It's called Paris to the Moon, by New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik. He has written some compelling pieces this week, but this book, written long ago, is about his life as an expat in Paris with his young family. He explains that living in a new city in a new country must be navigated in the same way he adjusts to a new son. There are new routines, new language and a new appreciation for things previously unknown. He clearly loves the city, and he has a funny and honest way of describing some typically French situations.
The second book is new. In The Little Paris Bookshop, by Nina George, we meet Monsieur Perdu, a literary apothecary, who has a bookstore on the Seine. Perdu has an intuitive knack for finding the exact book a reader needs to mend a broken heart. The only one he can't seem to heal is himself. This book is a love letter to books and to Paris.
The third book needs no explanation. Eloise in Paris, by Kay Thompson, is an absolute joy. Just read it. You will smile all day long.
These books will give you a renewed love for Paris. You may even be inspired to plan a trip. Either way, I think you will enjoy the journey.
While you are planning, don't forget to plan a visit to our event on January 26 at 6pm to hear Donna Apidone interview Anthony Marra about his new book, The Tsar of Love and Techno. It is fantastic. This is our Third Anniversary Party, so it will be an extra special night for CapRadio Reads. I hope to see you there.