These two short novellas speak to the politics of love. Gigi is a young girl being educated in the skills of the Courtesan, about to enter a world where a woman's chief weapon is her body. However with the bored and very rich Gaston Lachaille, Gigi wants nothing of this 'education'. The Cat is about a love triangle between a man, his fiancee and his beloved Russian Blue cat.
Paperback, 160 pages
Translated from the French by Roger Senhouse
Published by Vintage Classics, New Edition 2001 Gigi first published in 1944 La Chatte first published in 1933
Talk about comfort food; I'm at the lay in bed reading stage with this tombe. It's truly a love song celebration to the foods and ways of British gastronomy. You can feel Jamie's enthusiasm spring from each page.
Hardcover, 408 pages
By Jamie Oliver
Publisher, Michael Joseph, an imprint from Penguin
(which shows in the suffering harsh reprint of the images)
Pictured left: Oliver at Hamburg book publication
Gavalda explores the twists of fate that connect four people in Paris. A starving artist, her shy neighbor, his obnoxious roommate, and a neglected grandmother. This curious group together support one another to face the world.
Paperback, 474 pages
by Anna Galvada
Translated from the French Ensemble, C'est Tout: Alison Anderson
Published by Vintage Books 2007
In The Conference of the Birds Caldecott Honor-winning book author and illustrator Peter Sís has beautifully adapted this 12th century Sufi poem, which tells the story of an epic flight of birds in search of the true king, Simorgh.
Hardback 160 pages
by Farid Ud-Din Attar (AD 1177)
Adapted and Illustrated by Peter Sis
Published by Penguin Press HC, October, 2011
London based singer, songwriter and guitarist Brooke Sharkey sings in french and english. She lived in France, then busked her way around Europe, India and South America. She performs shows and festivals, where I stumbled across her off of Columbia Road in London.
According to ancient Japanese protocol, foreigners wishing to approach the emperor did so with fear and trembling, conveying ultimate respect. Amelie goes to Japan to spend a year working at the Yumimoto Corporation. Returning to the land where she was born is a fulfillment of a dream; working there turns into a comic nightmare.
Ben l'Oncle Soul (Benjamin Duterde, born 1984) is a Belgian soulsinger and songwriter. He was discovered by Motown France in 2008. His first release, recorded in a Belgian garage, pretty much blew me away. This recent shiny sparkley CD did the same.
by Ben L'Oncle Soul (as in Uncle Ben...)
Released 2010 Motown Records
Lady Painter is the biography about Joan Mitchell, an amazing artist whose main works exploded on the art scene during the 1950s through the 1970s. The author, Patricia Albers, reconstructs Joan's large and impassioned life, her growing prominence as an artist, her marriage and affairs, her life in France and her friendships with various poets and painters. The book was a whoa - phew sort of read, but well worth the ride.
Zaz, born Isabelle Geffroy, 1980 in Tours, is a French singer with a jazzy, earthy sound. She pretty much exploded on the French charts. By the time I discovered her in July, 2011, her song "Je Veux" could be heard all over Paris.
Released May, 2010 on PID
(or Sony in the states)
"Dans mon immeuble, on est quatre du même âge, mais c'est Toto qui a eu l'idée le premier : faire sortir de chez elle la vieille rainette du troisième. Et croyez-moi, c'était pas du gâteau!" I learned lots of fun words from this book. Great illustrations.
Hardback, 34 pages In French by Muriel Kerba Published by Gautier-Languereau, October, 2008
I found this slim book while cleaning out our stepmother's apartment.
It is a collection of poems from three Russian poets; Yevgeni Yevttushenko, Semyon Kirsanov and Andrei Voznesky. This book became my introduction to the Pocket Poet Series published by Lawrence Felinghetti.
Paperback 64 pages
Published by City Lights Books 1962
Translation by Anselm Hollo
Originally published in Russian in a number of publications
including Literaturnaya Gazeta and Oktyabr
There was a time in my life that I dreamt, slept and ate Parker; Alfred Desio had us performing tap routines to three of his pieces. Parker is one of my lost on a desert island musicians. Come to find out he's floating along here somewhere in France.
Above and Below
Released November 15, 1994
(re-read) Suzanne Goins is the chef-owner of Lucques, a Los Angeles restaurant noted for its Sunday Supper meals. I knew nothing about Suzanne the first time I went to one of her Sunday Suppers, only, I was home from France and missing good lucques - so I went.
When I first moved to France I was impressed by how many things people did on the train. They were on a train eating, on a train reading, on a train to make the errands...
"Être en train de..." is a type of present progressive used in french when you are in the midst of making the action.
For example "Je suis en train de lire..." basically means "I am reading..."
It's quite a romantic notion imagining all these things taking place on a train, and the notion still remains in my head whenever I hear this phrase.
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En train de Pedaler is a secret site within Pedaler dans la Choucroute. Subscribing here means you will receive an email each time something new is discovered on a train. I will never rent, sell or give your email to anyone, so your secret is safe with me.