My love affair with France and Paris started at an early age. I have never been. How can one have a love affair with a place they have never seen? I know I am not alone. My best answer is the romance and beauty of it all. Perhaps some created in my mind. But that does not denture me in the slightest. It is rather like my love affair with anything before 1950...though I also have a fondness for early 1960 and back....I do not claim to know all about it, be well versed or educated about it all, but it holds a special place in my heart. That is France for me. It has my heart.
When I was a child, I dreamed of floating above the city hanging onto a giant red balloon, like in the movie of the same name "The Red Balloon". On rainy days, our teacher often played this film, and with the clicking of the projector and the flashing images up on the white screen at the head of the class, I would always become entranced with what played out before me.I still am to this day. I often go to You Tube, look it up and play clips. When I became older, and met my then boyfriend and was soon to become my husband, I was entranced by his stories and photos of his visit to there and so many other wonderful places in Europe that he had already traveled to as a teen with first a singing group from church and later with is parents and a group of graduating seniors from his high school. He promised me that one day we would see the Eiffel Tower together and dine on French food. It happened, but not in the way that we both had planned.
Life got in the way, money did not present itself and we ended up experiencing The Paris Hotel in Las Vegas instead...we did go up into the Eiffel Tower, we did eat French food. There was strolls along cobblestone streets,watching of street performers and lovely decadent desserts were had with Parisian music in the background. It was not what we had both planned, but in a way, a very sweet way, he had kept his promise. To this day, I still hold the times there close and dear.
I have always had a touch of France in my life. I either had it in decor, the music CD's that I buy and play, the movies I watch,foods I eat, wine I drink and even the way that I dress. I know that the odds are good that I shall never actually step foot on the soil there, but I can transport myself there within my thoughts and my minds eye. One way I have been able to do that besides the music and movies is through wonderful books. Currently I have been reading books, one right after the other than has something to do with France and or Paris. I close the back cover of one, and begin with the opening of the cover of the next. So today, I wanted to share with you a few of my recent favorites, as well as a series that I read a while back, but was over the moon for.
I have shared with you of course this wonderful book. Jamie has actually become a new friend of mine through a series of emails, and now I follow her blog of the same name as the book. We have hopes of meeting in December, and I tell you, her book indeed brought so much happiness to me, as did her answering my emails, that I am very excited to meet in person. ( info here )
I was actually lucky enough to win this book on another blog, and I follow Corine on Twitter(@hiddeninfrance). I knew the book was not the typical book I read, but I do love a good character study, and this was just that. Each page drew me in to the lives of the main Character Annie, and soon I was just as invested with each character that arrived on the pages before me. I read each night till I could not keep my eyes open, and like the previous book, when the last sentence had been read, and the book closed, I was sad to have it end. ( you can get more info here )
I am currently beginning on Lunch in Paris. It is too soon for me to tell how much I will love this book. Again, it is not a style of book that I normally read, but I am willing to give it a chance.(more info here )
Of course if you look above in the upper left hand corner, you will see I did an entire 8 week series on this wonderful book. It so inspired me to embrace not only a few new French traits, but in many ways also further embrace my own U.S.A., as well as discovering new music to enjoy and movies too!
A number of years ago I began a series, A Year In Provence,
Toujours Provence, and now I see he has so many wonderful books that I simply must add to my book shelf for reading. His books gave an amusing, true to life peek into what it would be like to pack up and move to the Provence region of France; the food,wine, the people, even the weather and remodeling of the home they bought. I would highly suggest reading anything written by this man, a smile will be brought to your face so many times it will nearly get frozen that way!
I would love it if you my readers have suggestions for movies to rent, CDs to buy, and books to read...one can always use a touch more France and or Paris in their daily life, and continue the love affair!
Jusqu'à ce qu'après nous rencontrons, peut vous commence votre propre affaire d'amour
* Till next we meet, may you begin your own love affair