“You’re the girl that’s got it all: personality, ambition, intelligence, and killer style.”
With an opening sentence like that, who wouldn’t want to delve deeper into Parisienne French: Chic Phrases, Slang & Style from Rhianna Jones. This miniature book – about the size of an iPad mini but three times thicker – is chock full of must-know deets for a vacay in Paris, from culture and lifestyle to fashion and food. But, this is not your typical travel guide – it’s more of an intimate look at the stylish city and its people. If you’ve been planning a trip to the lovely city, this is the book you want in your carry on. It’s just what I need to plan my first excursion to the fashion capital of the world, from how to talk the lingo, to how to formulate a French text – it’s all about abbreviations.
Parisienne French covers everything needed on a mission to Paris to make you appear a Parisian pro including how to speak the language. If the idea of speaking French has you tongue-tied, there’s a guide on pronouncing various letter combinations with familiar word examples such as Chanel (shah-nel) – after all, it’s a must to know how to pronounce fashion designer names. But don’t expect this book to read like a translator, that’s what the Rosetta Stone app is for. Instead, this is the book for the chic mademoiselle to learn those cultural tidbits to exude a certain je ne sais quoi that makes you shine in the City of Lights. Here’s 5 reasons “Parisienne French” is your perfect Paris guide:
1. Deciphering the Language
From how to pronounce letters in the alphabet to how to form a question, this overview on using the French language is the perfect accouterment to help you endear locals and engage new friends. You’ll find yourself saying more than bonjour and bonsoir.
2. Navigating the City
Whether you’re walking or taking public transportation to get around the city, it’s all in the small details like telling time the French way – BTW, being a smidge late is a good thing – and knowing the neighborhoods to put on your radar such as Le troisième, 3ème: Le (Haut) Marais, which is part of one of the hippest hoods in Paris and home to the oldest market in the city, Le Marché des Enfants Rouges, dating back to 1615.
3. Exploring the Culture
The French are known for being culturally savvy people and Paris pays homage to this and those who have influenced contemporary society via music, film, and of course, art – including a list of museums worth a visit such as Musee d’Orsay, which has a glass roof and rests on the left bank of the Seine.
4. Embracing the Style
Paris is the fashion capital of the world, home to Haute Couture, so when it comes to style, this city has it in spades. If you’re trying to capture the look of a Parisian girl, this book lays it out in style genres such as La Bohème, which the book describes as a 70’s style and lists Jane Birkin, British actress and namesake of the Hermès Birkin bag, as a style idol.
5. Mastering the Cuisine
Food is a treasured pleasure in Paris, so it’s no surprise that French cuisine would get its own chapter. Besides mannerisms when it comes to dining out or at a friend’s home, there’s also a list of recipes to create your own Parisian fare such as French onion soup and blueberry Almond clafoutis.
For more information or to buy Parisienne French, visit amazon.com.
The Chic Spy
(Image courtesy of Ulysses Press)