August 20, 2015

7 Books You Must Read Before Visiting Paris

The preparation leading up to any trip is almost as much fun as the trip itself. That means research and lots of reading material! The following 7 books were invaluable as I prepared for my most recent trip to Paris! Seriously, I would not have had nearly as much fun if I hadn’t read these gems cover to cover. If you’re preparing for a Paris adventure, these are worth their weight in gold!

Now, as I prepare for another shopping trip to Paris next month, the pages in my copies are becoming more dog-eared than ever!

All of the books in this post are pictured in the photo below, and listed in order from top to bottom.


Photo by Bax Miller.

1) Markets of Paris, Second Edition by Dixon Long and Marjorie R. Williams. Check it out here.

This handy pocket-sized book is a comprehensive list of all the permanent markets in Paris (food, crafts, antiques, books, birds, and more!) divided by arrondissement, and then further categorized by type.

2) Parisienne French – Chic Phrases, Slang and Style by Rhianna Jones. Check it out here.

This is no simple phrase book. In addition to essential French phrases, it also provides much-needed context on culture, home life and fashion.

3) Rick Steves Paris 2015 Guidebook. Check it out here.

**The most important and most practical book on this list is the Rick Steves Paris 2015 Guidebook. Rick’s books are always a treasure trove of useful information, and out of all of the guidebook brands available I find his to be the most organized. If you were to only bring one book with you to Paris, this should be it! I repeat, this should be it!

4) Paris Louis Vuitton City Guide. Check it out here.

A guide for everything from French etiquette to luxury hotels, to scenic walking routes through the city.

5) How To Be Parisian Wherever You Are – Love, Style and Bad Habits by Anne Berest, Audrey Diwan, Caroline de Maigret and Sophie Mas. Check it out here.

I loved this funny, quick read. Written by four French women, it gives a Parisian’s perspective on everything. Men, entertaining, shopping, smoking, you name it. It’s a good time.

6) The Paris Style Guide – Shop, Eat, Sleep by Elodie Rambaud. Check it out here.

This book is a giant list of amazing shops in Paris, divided by category. Some examples of chapters include Textiles, Nature & Botanicals, Art & Color, Vintage, Children, and several more. The list is great, but what makes it amazing are the full-page color photos that go along with each shop listing. For a visual person like me, this books is a dream!

7) Paris – An Inspiring Tour of the City’s Creative Heart by Janelle McCulloch. Check it out here.

This book is a special one. Written by a creative for other creatives, it tells a beautiful story about Paris by taking you on a stroll through each arrondissement and highlighting it’s creative gems along the way. The photography is impeccable, and the comprehensive listings of stores in the back of the book are an incredible source. They are organized by helpful categories like Flea Markets or Gourmet Stores, and they list the street address, website and phone number for each place which is a great time saver!

Au revoir and happy reading!