We’re going to Paris!

Wright Love letter Paris
This Richard Wright quote comes from The NEH Preservation Project: http://www.wnyc.org/story/192767-richard-wright/

A few weeks ago, a tweet from @TheFlightDeal strolled on down my Twitter timeline. The tweet? It advertised $250 round trip flights from the United States to Europe. I was skeptical, but a colleague from our local alumnae group chat said that they’d booked a ticket to London for around that price.

I had to check, particularly because it was “temporary wealth day,” also known as payday. The money was sitting heavily in my pocket as I went to the Air Canada website to book my ticket. Long story short: my boyfriend received a frantic “WE’RE GOING TO FRANCE” call about ten minutes later. We’ll be leaving the first week of November, making it one heck of a birthday gift to myself.

I’ve traveled significantly, but never to Paris. I feel like I should prepare, as I have before all of my previous trips. It’s also likely to be the last time I travel internationally for a good long while, so I want to make the most of my time.

Naturally, the impending trip has inspired a reading list. Really, I’m hoping it will give me somewhere to channel my excitement. I’ve developed a [short] reading list to get us ready over the next few weeks. We’ll see how much of this I get through:

  1. Le Petit Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry: This is one of my favorite books—I’ll always look for a reason to read it.

    Le Petit Prince
    The Little Prince
  2. The New Yorker’s Paris Journal: I’m looking for more of the this type of thing– compilations of short stories and the like that will provide good reading material on my morning commute.
  3. Exiled in Paris: Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Samuel Beckett, and Others on the Left Bank, by James Campbell:  Having done cursory research in undergrad on the numerous African American artists in Paris, I’m eager to learn more before the trip.

What I’d really like to do is read some short stories that take place in Paris. Really descriptive ones that help me visualize the sights and sounds. If you know of any (or if you have recommendations for places to visit while I’m there), let me know in the comments!



  1. Have fun! I was there a couple of months ago. It was my second time there and I loved it just as much this time around. Make sure you check out the best bookshop in the world called Shakespeare and Company. It’s always busy but is just the best shop to be in. If you buy something there you can even have the book stamped with their store stamp as an extra special memento. It’s super close to Notre Dame cathedral so if you’re planning on going there you can kill two birds with one stone. There are also lots of little second hand book stalls nearby.


  2. What an exciting birthday treat for you! Maybe you could read short stories by the Lost Generation writers. I’ve heard that many of the Left Bank bookshops and cafes they hung out in are still around. Those might be fun to visit.


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