The Parisian Bookshelf

Since my arrival in Paris I've acquired some books for I wanted to start reading in french to practice the language (and because the books are really cheap!!!). I discovered my interest in french literature about 2 years ago and consequently I started learning french. An year and a half later I landed in Paris for a six months stay. I must say my love for french literature remains on the books, the place can be disappointing at times. 

I can say that the first book I ever read in french was Daniel Arasse's Histoires de Peintures, Daniel Arasse was a great art historian who wrote this book on his late years, so this is more of a personal review than an academic analysis, it's quite delightful and a great introduction to art and european painting.
It is quite cheap on, around 8€.

I'm really happy to present this one: Lettres au Castor by Jean-Paul Sartre.
It is quite expensive for the average book price in Paris but it was a gift from my wonderful father so I have no complaints, just commendations. It is a beautiful edition by Gallimard of course and it has the most romantic and non romantic letters from Sartre to Simone de Beauvoir, and also to other women, as I honestly expected. It is a good introduction to Sartre's writing although I think his other works differ a lot from this one. 

I had to show you the beautiful cover

Quoting from page 147

Mon charmant Castor

Ceci ma dernière lettre avant votre retour. Je voudrais bien qu'elle soit longue et pompeuse mais je n'ai rien à vous dire et la pompe n'est pas mon affaire.

This is the first volume of two, Simone de Beauvoir has also a published book of letters that I haven't read yet but they seem as capturing as this one. 

You can find them on, and for the english readers there's and

The next book was the first one I ever bought in the wonderful Shakespeare and Company bookstore. It's called The Discovery of France and it's written by the famous Graham Robb. I gained a considerable interest in french history since I arrived in Paris and this was the most easy, most appealing option. It is a great journey trough France and it's most occult places. The author has another book called Parisians that I am very curious to read but haven't got the opportunity to buy it yet. 

The Discovery of France

I have a bunch of other books to write about but I find this post quite extensive, so I'll leave that for another time.
I'll leave you with my two favorite (and predictable) bookstores in Paris: 

La Hune, 18 rue de l'Abbaye 75006 Paris
Open from Monday to Saturday from 10h00 to 00h00
On Sundays from 11h00 to 20h00

Shakespeare and Company, 31 rue de la Bûcherie 75005 Paris
Open from Monday to Friday from 10h00 to 23h00 
On Saturdays and Sundays from 11h00 to 23h00

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