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March 2015

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Paris by Janelle McCulloch

Written by , Posted in Reviews

Three Stars

Paris

This is a book I’ve seen in a few different higher-end design stores. It seems like the kind of thing that Anthropologie would stock (shoot, maybe they do); I happened to get it at one of those houseware shops that stocks things according to color. We are lucky enough to be heading to Paris at the end of the month, so I felt justified in buying this book.

Written by a journalist and photographer, this book feels more coffee table book than guide book. The photographs are just gorgeous; honestly, I think it’d be worth buying if you just want something gorgeous to set on your coffee table to pick up now and then. The colors are so vibrant. The accompanying text is fine, but it’s not necessarily exactly what I am looking for in what essentially is a very pretty guidebook.

Ms. McCulloch spends half of the book providing overviews and ‘a walk through’ most of the arrondissements. Each overview is about two pages, followed by two pages highlighting shops, cafes, museums and streets the author thinks the reader should explore. All of the places are then listed in the second half of the book, with addresses and fuller descriptions of them. Which leads me to treat this as a reference book. However, it’s so large that there’s just no way I want to bring it with me on our trip. I could go through and write down each place to visit, but it seems to defeat the purpose, as the shops will be lacking in the context the author worked so hard to provide.

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