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5 of My Favorite French Books (Wednesday Whimsy #11)


Bonjour and happy Wednesday! I am currently in the air and on my way to Atlanta for a road trip to New Orleans for Nola StoryCon. I get to spend a week in the south eating the best food and enjoying one last chance at summer weather (Seattle has been very disappointing, but then again no one has AC so that's probably a good thing). I am very excited to be meeting Charlaine Harris and Delilah S. Dawson for the first time and seeing Kevin Hearne again. Posts from my previous trip to NOLA can be found here, here, here, and here.

I thought I'd change things up a bit for this Wednesday Whimsy and do a list of five of my favorite French books. Here you go:

5. The Little Paris Kitchen by Rachel Khoo. The only cookbook on the list and I know I have mentioned it several times on other WW posts, but I use it so much that it has to be on here. Favorite recipes have been: Crispy rabbit with Meaux mustard, Quiche Lorraine, Chicken and mushrooms in a white wine sauce, and oeufs en cocotte. And there are so many more on my list to try.

4. Out of Sorts by Aurélie Valognes. Written by a French author, it's about a severely grumpy old man who learns that he doesn't have to be. It's a great read! I listened to the audiobook.

3. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby. The movie version made me cry. This book was written by a man who was completely paralyzed after a stroke. He dictated this entire book one letter at a time by blinking his eyes. That fact alone deserves a read by everyone.

2. Seven Letters from Paris by Samantha Vérant. Probably the book I recommend the most to people, after anything by Gail Carriger. This book gets happier and happier as you read it, until you want to explode with how great it is. My review here.

1. The Red Notebook (and The President's Hat and The Portrait, but I didn't want to take up three spots with one author) by Antoine Laurain, my tied-with-Gail-Carriger-favorite-author. Laurain's books will make you whimsical and happy and feel like you can do anything with your life. Like write a book, which is what I started doing after reading The Portrait. My review of The Red Notebook here.

In searching for blog links relating to the books above, I discovered a similar post I did almost a year ago on the same topic. Read it here!

Also book related, David Lebovitz has a new book coming out this fall and he's going on tour! To the United States! AND SEATTLE! So excited! Sorry for all the exclamation points!!!!!

All of the pictures in this post are courtesy of my June 2010, and first, trip to Paris.

Why LA? Pourquoi Paris? by Diane Ratican (Early Review)


Diane Ratican, a native Californian, gives us this whimsical book comparing two of her favorite cities in Why LA? Pourquoi Paris? Between charming illustrations of Paris by Eric Giriat and LA by Nick Lu, Ratican narrates the main points that make these two cities alike and different.

I've seen a lot of compare/contrasts between New York City and Los Angeles, or Paris and NYC, but never LA and Paris and I like that that sets this book apart from the rest. I have never been to LA and learned quite a bit about the city. I am a huge Francophile and have read a lot about Paris and France so there wasn't really new information for me there but I still enjoyed reading it. This would make a great read for any Paris, LA, or art enthusiast and definitely feels more like an art book than a travel book to me, though there are some travel suggestions.

The second edition of the book is coming out on September 14, 2017 and will be bilingual English and French. From what I gathered in skimming the French section, the LA bits are focused on presenting it to the French audience reading and the Paris parts focused on presenting Paris to English readers. The formatting was a mess on the copy I read, and even so I still enjoyed the book. After looking at what is available to see on Amazon in the first edition, it made me excited for the book all over again and I will have to go check it out in person when it does come out. It is also a great way to practice my French!

4/5 Stars

I was given a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday Whimsy #10


Bonjour! Happy Wednesday and Happy September. I've spent the past month obsessively reading so I could complete all the squares for the Seattle Public Library's Summer Book Bingo. It felt pretty good to set a goal for myself and complete it, even if it is something I was going to do anyway. Read with a purpose, I say. Now I'm on to catch up on ARCs on NetGalley.


One of the final books I read for Summer Book Bingo (a roundup post is in the works) was All the Light we Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. I'm writing a review for it, but let me just say that it was great and I highly recommend it.

Also, I've been cooking up a storm out of The Little Paris Kitchen, which I believe I previously mentioned on a WW post. I've never cooked so much out of one cookbook and the vast majority of the recipes have been a hit. The kindle version is only $2.99, if you're into that sort of thing. Two of my favorites: crispy rabbit with Meaux mustard (I used drumsticks) and chicken and mushrooms in a white wine sauce. And she's working on a new cookbook!


As I buckle down and try to have a plan for what I want to eat for the week, this article on what this French blogger eats in a day, and others like it, will be my main inspiration.

I love this cheeky article featuring Jeanne Damas on fashion.

If you're local to Seattle, SIFF's French Cinema Now starts at the end of the month. I will try to go to as many as I can, just like last year. Last year I saw Eva and Leon, and SUPER AMAZING movie that is not available for me in the US on DVD >.< I keep checking Amazon regularly just incase...


Daphne from Mode and the City has a few posts on the summer road trip she did a few months ago. Here's the first post. (I read in Chrome where it will translate for me ^.^)

Speaking of great summer vacations, Aurélie went to Singapore and Bali and her pictures are so, so dreamy.

I love Clotilde's monthly roundup emails so I can see what poem she memorized and what museum she visited for the month. This time she did a Best of Summer post, recapping her family vacation and sharing that her new cookbook is up for preorder.

The above photo is a pastry from a French bakery right next door to my hair salon. Guess what I have for breakfast each time I go? Currently I am a week out from my Atlanta/New Orleans road trip (flying into Atlanta then driving to NOLA) so I am in planning and packing list mode. I am looking forward to some real summer weather and the AC to go along with it.