"Time Out" Book of Paris Walks ("Time Out" Guides)

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9780140287219:

Twenty-three walks in the French capital, covering everything from the well trodden tourist trail to hidden corners well off the beaten track. Parisians and Francophiles make up the list of contributors, which includes the novelist Alan Furst, writer and broadcaster Michael Palin, and writer and journalist Maureen Freely.

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Product Description:

A collection of twenty-five walks in the streets and parks of Paris. Maps are included with the text, with listings of restaurants, cafes, shops, and bars.

Review:

Paris Walks is a collection of vignettes on the history of allées and cul-de-sacs that can't be seen from the Champs-Elysées Macdonalds, and that alone makes it worth reading, whether or not you're a walker or even in Paris. With a strong bent towards art and literature, the 23 walks (these are not tours) transport the reader into decades past. Antoine de Gaudemar searches for André Breton's muse, Michael Palin pokes into the still very moveable feast that was Hemingway's inspiration and in a literary gem of an essay Jean Paul Dollé writes on the Latin Quarter.

Each walk is mapped and lists distance, walking time plus the cafés and shops which may extend an hour's canter into an afternoon. The glossary of further reading (Balzac, Céline, Hugo, Hemingway, Mitford and the Alice B Toklas Cookbook) may easily lead walkers off the paths laid out here. If you share writer Nicholas Lezard's dislike of literary walks, read his "Walking for Godot" first. With him, seven miles and four hours later, "wild with literary cadences and cheap white wine" Lezard leaves Beckett--and the walker--exhausted on the quayside allée des Cygnes. --Kathleen Buckley

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