Paris to the Past

Paris to the Past

Traveling Through French History by Train

Book - 2011
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In one of the most inventive travel books in years, Ina Caro invites readers on twenty-five one-day train trips that depart from Paris and transport us back through seven hundred years of French history. Whether taking us to Orléans to evoke the miraculous visions of Joan of Arc, to Versailles to experience the flamboyant achievements of Louis XIV, or to the Place de la Concorde to witness the beheading of Marie Antoinette, Caro animates history with her lush descriptions of architectural splendors and tales of court intrigue. Organizing her destinations chronologically from twelfth-century Saint-Denis to the nineteenth-century Restoration at Chantilly, Caro appeals not only to the casual tourist aboard the Metro or the TGV but also to the armchair reader of Peter Mayle's A Year in Provence. Caro's passion for and knowledge of France--its soaring cathedrals, enthralling history, and sumptuous cuisine--are so impressive that Paris to the Past promises to become one of the classic guidebooks of our time.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Co., c2011.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780393078947
Branch Call Number: 914.4361 Caro 07/2011
Characteristics: xi, 381 p. :,maps ;,25 cm.


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Jun 05, 2014

I am not the biggest fan of non-fiction but every once in a while I come across a book that I have to try. Being a huge enthusiast of travel by train, a friend thought this would be my kind of book and she proved to be right.

Ina Caro takes you on a journey from the 12th century to the 19th century without ever leaving the comfort of her rented Paris apartment. It is pretty obvious that the author loves France, she gushes about the food, the tour guides, the buildings, the history and especially her favorite emperor, Napoleon III.

I wasn’t interested in her restaurant suggestions but that is because no matter where I travel I stick to McDonald’s, much to the disgust of my friends and family. I really hate going on tours, the rest of the group and the forced stop and go put me off, so those suggestions are also not to my taste. The idea that you can take 25 different day trips with no more than a 90 minute train ride right from the center of Paris is fabulous. These trips take you to actual castles, cathedrals and palaces, which are always right at the top of any travel list I make, and they are described in detail with all the history surrounding their construction, re-construction and occupants. I now have some new ideas for the next trip to France, I'm so excited.

Jul 06, 2012

Insightful, smart, humorus book about French art and history.


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