Suggested Reading List
A Traveller's History of France
Author: Robert Cole
Description: This fast-moving survey covers the conquests of ancient Gaul through the heady days of revolution to modern times.
A World Lit Only By Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance, Portrait of an Age
Author: William Manchester
Description: Organized into sections on the Renaissance, Reformation and Discovery, Manchester's popular history evokes in vivid detail the great figures and daily life of the 16th century, including Henry VIII, Magellan, Borgia, da Vinci and Martin Luther.
Adventures on the Wine Route, A Wine Buyer's Tour of France
Author: Kermit Lynch
Description: A delightful and warmly anecdotal book highly recommended for anyone touring the wine regions of France. Lynch brings the domains and appellations of French wine to full-blown life and his portraits of the grand personalities who make the wine are priceless.
Author: David Byrne
Description: As he makes it clear in this exhilarating chronicle of encounters around the world, David Byrne is hooked on bicycles -- not just to get around New York, but as the preferred form of transportation in places like Buenos Aires, Istanbul, San Francisco, London, Berlin, Manila, Pittsburgh and Cleveland.
Birds of Europe
Author: Lars Svensson
Description: Featuring 3,500 glorious paintings by Killian Mullarney and Dan Zetterstrom, the second edition of this exquisite guide has been updated with revised text and maps.
Cathedrals and Castles, The Cathedral Builders of the Middle Ages
Author: Alain Erlande-Brandenburg
Description: This pocket-size encyclopedia of the art, architecture and culture of the Middle Ages features hundreds of drawings, color illustrations and a brief chronology.
Author: Joanne Harris
Description: This charming novel set in the Loire Valley pits provincial morals against pleasure. Adapted into a popular movie.
Eyewitness Guide Loire Valley
Author: Eyewitness Guides
Description: Visually rich, comprehensive, and practical, this guidebook is an excellent introduction to the history, culture and attractions of the Loire Valley. Highly recommended.
Eyewitness Guide Paris
Author: Eyewitness Guides
Description: Gorgeous, well-illustrated and filled with maps, this compact book provides an excellent overview of the French capital, its history, traditions and sights.
French Revolutions, Cycling the Tour De France
Author: Tim Moore
Description: British humorist, travel writer -- and woefully inexperienced cyclist -- Moore attempts to tackle the Tour de France, all 2,256 miles of it, in this hilarious, irreverent travelogue.
In a Dark Wood Wandering, A Novel of the Middle Ages
Author: Hella Haasse
Description: With a cast of thousands including Joan of Arc and the Dukes of Burgundy, this 1949 historical novel renders the political intrigue, people and texture of 15th-century Europe and of medieval court life during the Hundred Years War.
Joan of Arc
Author: Mary Gordon
Description: In elegant, insightful prose, novelist Gordon meditates on the courageous and complex young girl and the iconic status she has acquired.
Loire Valley Map 517
Author: Michelin Travel Publications
Description: A map of the Loire region of France in the series published by Michelin series, at a scale of 1:200,000.
Lonely Planet French Phrasebook
Author: Marie-Helene Girard, Anny Monet
Description: This handy phrasebook focuses on pronunciation, basic grammar and essential vocabulary for the traveler.
The Autumn of the Middle Ages
Author: Johan Huizinga
Description: A pioneering work of social and cultural history, this well translated classic is a richly detailed portrait of life, thought and art in 14th- and 15th-century France and the Netherlands.
The Food of France
Author: Waverly Root
Description: An evocative and beautifully written survey of French food. First published in 1958 and revised in the mid-1970s, the book covers the important regions of French cuisine by dividing them into domains of Butter (northern France), Fat (Alsace) and Oil (the south).
The Most Beautiful Villages of the Loire
Author: James Bentley, Hugh Palmer (Photographer)
Description: An illustrated portrait of the region, its landscape, architecture, and people, featuring 275 color photographs and accompanying lively essays by Francophile James Bentley.
The Road from the Past, Traveling through History in France
Author: Ina Caro
Description: Time travel through France by way of its finest castles, chateaux, cathedrals and monasteries. This unusual travelogue is an invaluable companion for traveling in Paris, southern France, the Dordogne and the Loire Valley, combining personal observation with large doses of well-presented history.