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From cookbooks to historical fiction, thsee books will transport you to the City of Light. Photo: efired/Getty Images

> The Listicles

Meet Me in Paris: Travel by the Book to the City of Light

Grounded by the pandemic, we need books to transport us even more / BY Cynthia Ross Cravit / July 25th, 2020

As Audrey Hepburn said, “Paris is always a good idea.” Dreaming of cosy cafés or leisurely strolls along the Seine? Here are some  books to transport you to the City of Light.

Obsessive Book Buyers: Zoomer editors have carefully curated our book coverage to ensure you find the perfect read. We may earn a commission on books you buy by clicking on the cover image. 

1My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories by David Lebovitz

Ten years ago, a boomer foodie packed up his favourite cookbooks and cast-iron skillet and, after renting an apartment online, followed his dream of moving to Paris. Chef David Lebovitz delighted us with his irreverent look at cheese, chocolate and other confections in The Sweet Life in Paris. Now a new book, My Paris Kitchen, continues his love affair with the city. With this collection of 100 recipes and nearly as many stories of everyday life, Lebovitz gives his take on today’s Parisian culinary culture. Part cookbook, part memoir, part love letter to Paris, this gorgeous book will leave you hungry for more.

2Paris: The Novel by Edward Rutherfurd

The internationally bestselling author of New York, London and sets his sights on Paris for this sweeping novel. Cutting back and forth across the centuries, Rutherfurd tells the story of Paris through the experiences of six families, rich and poor. From the building of Notre Dame to the glittering court of Versailles, from the Revolution to the 1920’s Lost Generation to the Nazi occupation, the intrigues of the characters are set against the history of the city. Impeccably researched, Edward Rutherfurd captures the romance, sights and scents of Paris in all its glory.

3The Perfume Collectorby Kathleen Tessaro

From the bestselling author of Elegance and The Debutante comes this story of old glamour, passion and possibility. Weaving through the decades from 1920s New York to London and Paris, The Perfume Collector, in true Parisian spirit, explores the obsessive and très complicated love between muse and artist and the transporting power of memory and scent. When London socialite, Grace Monroe, receives an unexpected inheritance from someone she doesn’t even know, she discovers the abandoned shop Recherchez-moi on 23 rue Christine, once home to one of Paris’s greatest perfumers and a mysterious benefactor whose story will force Grace to make a life-changing choice.

4It's Not Love, It's Just Paris by Patricia Engel

Séraphine, Madame la Comtesse, is the owner of a gently crumbling Left Bank mansion known as The House of Stars. Now nearly 90 years old, she supports herself by renting out rooms to young women from around the world who come to Paris to work, study and, in time-honoured fashion, find life-changing love. One of her boarders is Lita del Cielo, the sheltered American daughter of two Colombian orphans, who falls in love with Cato, a man with a debilitating illness. With Lita torn between her ties to family, a career waiting for her back home and the possibility of a new life in Paris, the bedridden but ever-spirited and startlingly original Séraphine offers Lita her sage if unconventional advice. (“Most of the time people do not manage to marry the one they truly love” and “We must love the truth even when it is the opposite of what we desire.”)

5Paris Express: Simple Food from the City of Styleby Laura Calder

You can’t think of Paris without thinking of food, so here’s yet another cookbook to add to the list! Preparing French food doesn’t need to be complicated or time-consuming. From Canadian author and acclaimed TV personality Laura Calder, Paris Express serves up a collection of classic dishes that are simple and stylish. Transport yourself to a Paris state of mind and a certain art de vivre with these tips for eating and entertaining Parisian style.




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