Secrets of Paris 
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About Secrets of Paris

American-born travel journalist and guidebook author Heather Stimmler-Hall created the Secrets of Paris in 1999 to share the hidden side of the City of Light. Discover what you've been missing:

* Custom Travel Content 
* Free Paris Resource Guide
* Calendar of interesting Paris events
* Private Secrets of Paris Tours
* Monthly Secrets of Paris newsletter
* Secrets of Paris Videos

Read more about the Secrets of Paris here


Calendar of Paris Events

Through October 3
Don't miss one of the most magical events of the summer, the Candlelit Evenings at the Château Vaux-le-Vicomte, just an hour south of Paris by RER and shuttle. Visit the family-owned palace and gardens that inspired Versailles by candlelight, including dinner in the gardens (or bring your own picnic or book a table for a gourmet meal starting at €59) and a fireworks finale. Every Saturday evening, entry €19.50. 

Through October 18
The 32nd annual funfair carnival, the Fête à Neu Neu, opens on August 30th in the Bois de Boulogne (Porte de la Muette, 16th, M° Rue de la Pompe). Open 4pm-midnight Mon, Tues, & Thurs; 2pm-midnight Wed & Fri; and noon to midnight Sat-Sun. Free entry, ATM, Vélib station, food tents and rides (tickets purchased onsite).  

September 11-13
The annual Fête de l'Humanité is three days of live music (65 acts including headliners Manu Chao, Texas, and Juliette Gréco), debates (because the French love a good debate), arts and cinema expositions, a bal populaire, a book fair, and activities for kids. The main sponsor/organizer is the daily newspaper L'Humanité, whose motto is "Envie de Changer Le Monde" (The desire to change the world), so you can imagine it's quite a leftie leaning festival where politics, social justice and liberty are the main stars. This year it takes place in La Corneuve (northeast suburbs), and three-day passes are just €32 (€35 at the door; camping and parking also possible). 

Click here to see the full calendar of events...

Secrets of Paris gives 10% of all tour fees
to the French food bank, Les Restos du Coeur

English Book Shops in Paris

The Abbey Bookshop
29 Rue de la Parcheminerie, 5th
M° St-Michel or Cluny-La Sorbonne
Tel 01 46 33 16 24

www.abbeybookshop.net

Canadian expat Brian Spence runs this independent bookshop specializing in new and used books from Canada (in French and English), the UK and the US . He’ll be happy to help you navigate the densely stacked shelves (on two floors) to find what you’re looking for, and can special order books if he doesn’t have them in stock. It’s a great Latin Quarter alternative to that “other” book store around the corner. You may even see me among the stacks of books sipping coffee in winter (Brian always has a pot on for visitors) or procrastinating on a stool outside in the summer. Many author readings and social events are organized throughout the year in partnership with the Canadian Club (the schedule is usually posted on the shop door).

Shakespeare & Company
37 Rue de la Bucherie, 5th 
M° St-Michel
Tel 01 43 26 96 50

http://shakespeareandcompany.com/

Open since 1951, this independent, second-handbook shop is the successor of Sylvia Beach’s original Shakespeare & Co. in St-Germain-des-Prés, which closed during the Nazi occupation. The founder, American expat owner George Whitman, passed away in 2011, passing th store onto his daughter, Sylvia Beach Whitman. They still provide free bunk space in the shop’s library for visiting artists and writers. New and used books, as well as a read-only library upstairs.

The Red Wheelbarrow
Closed in 2013

WH Smith Paris
248 rue de Rivoli, 1st
M° Tuileries or Concorde
Tel 01 44 77 88 99

www.whsmith.fr

This is one of the largest English book stores in Paris (an independent branch of the British bookstore chain), with an impressive magazine selection and English food products upstairs. They host regular author events and readings for free if you get on their mailing list (on the website).

San Francisco Book Company
17 rue Monsieur le Prince, 6th
M° Odéon
Tel 01 43 29 15 70

www.sanfranciscobooksparis.com

A huge used book store on the Left Bank, with the followng categories: "Pocket-book mysteries, fiction, and science fiction, Trade paperback and hardcover fiction, Poetry, plays, theatre , film, music and art, Science, history and philosophy, psychology and sociology, Business and economics, Cooking, sports, children's and travel, First editions, rare, collectible ephemera and more."

Berkeley Books of Paris
8, rue Casimir Delavigne, 6th
www.berkeleybooksofparis.com

I haven't visited this relatively new second-hand bookshop yet, but I've heard they have a good selection of literary fiction and poetry. Buy, sell, or trade your quality English and American books here.

Brentanos 
37 Avenue de l'Opéra, 2nd
This historic bookshop closed in 2009, then reopened with a new owner in February 2010. Only 40% of the shop is devoted to English language books, and the rest of the store is for Paris souvenirs, post cards, etc. 

Galignani's
Rue de Rivoli, 1st

I'm only putting them in here so you don't think I "missed" a spot. But as long as there are other shops selling English books in Paris, you won't see me in this store. Bookstores can't afford to be rude to their quickly-dwindling client base. 

Tea & Tattered Pages
Closed in 2012

Village Voice
Closed in 2012

Discount French Books

Browse the Latin Quarter bookshops for French classics or art and design books on sale. A good place to start is under the ubiquitous yellow canopies of Gibert Jeune at Place St-Michel (M° St-Michel), with several stores dominating the intersection. Many of the discounted books are stacked on tables outside, but there’s also a small English-language section (look for “Langues et Letters”). This is a great place to get inexpensive French notebooks and stationary, as well.

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