Karen at Book Bath and Tamara at Thyme for Tea are hosting a special project this July, featuring the beautiful city of Paris. You can participate along with many others by clicking here.
I took this cliché picture when I was in Paris for a few days in June of 2006. I went as part of an early graduation present from my Grandmother with my best friend and mom. I absolutely fell in love with the city - with the geography, architecture, cuisine, people - everything. I still have a vivid, simple memory of my mom and I roaming the streets by our hotel looking for a nail salon. The entire trip was about 2 weeks long and had us spending time in London and Rome as well as Paris. At the time I was more interested in crossing off locations on a list than in the places themselves. Looking back I think those few days in Paris were the inspiring, because they showed me a city that I'd previously thought of as snobby and foreign as something amazing.
Since then I've taken French (with little success), discovered the charm of the French New Wave film movement, read Les Mis, I haphazardly watch the Tour de France every year, and have, taken a class completely dedicated to the French Revolution.
Every year I try to transport myself to a far away place using books. While this year has been more of an Italy year, one of my favorite books was set in Paris. Claude and Camille follows the early life of the painter Claude Monet and his first true love and wife, Camille. It made the Paris the Impressionists new vivid and entrancing. I'm looking forward to dedicating the parts of July that are not filled with Harry Potter to books that are anyway related to France.
After first hearing about Paris in July I was upset to realize that the only books that were either French/set in France were those of Victor Hugo and the above mentioned Claude and Camille. I decided I would enlist the help of the blogging community to come up with some other books for the month. The great people over at livejournals bookish community have been very helpful. If anyone is interested here is my book request post.
I look forward to reviewing some French inspired books and writing about my favorite French movies later in the month.