A writer for the New Yorker takes his wife and infant son to live in Paris for five years in the late nineties. Naïve new parents, they think they can save their son from the ‘Barnification’ of American culture. He is a keen chronicler of the differences he finds in France - both small (the circular strings of Christmas tree lights) and large (the resistance to reforming the French way of life to suit the global economy). This is an escapist book for everyone who is a bit dreamy about this particular city. As he says at the outset, “My head was filled with pictures of Paris, mostly in black and white, and I wanted to be in them.”
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I am always fascinated with an expat story. Gopnik is a great writer and just love listening to him speak as well.
great writing and feeling for Paris
An utterly boring scope of minute differences between New York and Paris life. A definite sleeper, unless you consider this author's writing to be witty, which I did not. (May 2005)
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