Suggested Reading List
1066, The Year of the Conquest
Author: David Howarth
Description: A crack medievalist and storyteller, Howarth brings to life the momentous events of 1066 in rich, anecdotal history -- a classic portrait of the Norman invasion and conquest of England.
A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver
Author: E.L. Konigsburg
Description: A marvelous fictionalized portrait of Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of France and England successively, traveler to Constantinople, wife of a future saint, mother of Richard the Lionheart and for 15 years a prisoner of the English Crown. For young adults.
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.
Battle of Normandy 1944 Map
Author: Michelin Travel Publications
Description: This historic reproduction shows battle dates, parachute drops and locations of Allied forces.
Cathedral, The Story of its Construction
Author: David MacAulay
Description: In this illuminating book for middle readers, master draughtsman MacAulay presents text and innovative drawings that detail the planning and construction of a 13th-century Gothic cathedral. It's a masterpiece.
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: Antony Beevor
Description: A new account of the invasion by the bestselling author of Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin 1945.
D-Day June 6, 1944
Author: Stephen Ambrose
Description: Ambrose's riveting popular account of the climactic battle of WWII.
Eyewitness Guide France
Author: Eyewitness Guides
Description: This superb guide to all of France features color photography, dozens of excellent local maps and a region-by-region synopsis of the country's attractions. Handsome, convenient and up-to-date, this is the guide to carry.
Fodor's Paris' 25 Best
Description: This shirt-pocket map and guide includes essential information on the city's history, highlights and sightseeing, ideal for a short visit to the City of Light.
Description: A colorful, accurate and up-to-date map of France at a scale of 1:1,000,000.
Into a Paris Quartier, Reine Margot's Chapel and other Haunts of St. Germain
Author: Diane Johnson
Description: Novelist Diane Johnson (Le Divorce) writes with insight, verve and wit in this affectionate, personal portrait of St Germain-des-Prés, her neighborhood on the Left Bank.
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.
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.
Monet, the Ultimate Impressionist
Author: Sylvie Patin
Description: A colorful pocket-size reference to Monet's life, paintings and contemporaries, perfect for those visiting Giverny.
Mont Saint Michel and Chartres
Author: Henry Brooks Adams
Description: First published at the turn of the century, this classic work is a meditation on the medieval world as reflected through its most famous religious structures.
Normandy, A Graphic Adaptation of D-Day, the Allied Invasion of Hitler's Fortress Europe
Author: Wayne Vansant
Description: The dramatic story of the planning and execution of the Allied invasion of Europe is told here in a graphic format (AKA comic book style) from the perspective of both the Allied and Axis forces, beginning with the invasion of the five D-Day beaches and continuing through the liberation of Paris.
Pardon My French
Author: Cathy Hapka
Description: Missing her boyfriend, Nicole is lonely in the City of Lights when she studies abroad. But with the help of some new friends -- and a handsome Frenchman -- she might change her mind. In the S.A.S.S. series.
Author: Borch Maps
Description: A sturdy laminated map of the city center at a scale of 1:12,000 and all of Paris at a scale of 1:15,000.
Author: Jennifer Donnelly
Description: The action in this YA novel, set against the backdrop of Paris, brings together figures from the French Revolution, the Classical roots of American rock-- and the very modern struggles of a 21st-century teenage girl coming of age.
Rough Guide Brittany & Normandy
Author: Greg Ward
Description: An informative, detailed guide to Brittany and Normandy with a good overview of history and culture, including sections on Monet, D-Day and Mont-St-Michel.
The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Author: Brian Selznick
Description: An intricate mystery told as a graphic novel for middle schoolers, Brain Selznick's captivating tale of an orphan boy on the streets of Paris in the 1930s seems a brilliant choice for Martin Scorsese's first 3-D venture, a family film starring Ben Kingsley and Sacha Baron Cohen. The movie opens November 23.
The Oysters of Locmariaquer
Author: Eleanor Clark
Description: Winner of the 1965 National Book Award, this paper edition of Clark's pleasurable portrait of the hardy oystermen and byways of coastal Brittany is introduced by Mark Kurlansky.
Author: Iain Pears
Description: On a remote island off of Brittany, an art critic sits completely still and silent as his old friend paints his portrait and tells him the story of his long and tortured life in this eerie mystery.
The Secret Life of the Seine
Author: Mort Rosenblum
Description: After losing his Paris apartment, Rosenblum, a born storyteller, takes to a houseboat moored on the Seine. The result is this entertaining tour of the places and people he encounters during his explorations along the river.
The Sun King
Author: Nancy Mitford
Description: An opulent, celebrated biography of Louis XIV. Gracefully written in a witty, conversational style, Mitford's book brings Versailles to vibrant life.