When Paris became the ultimate destination city.
Joan DeJean is Trustee Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of ten books on French literature, history, and material culture, including most recently The Age of Comfort: When Paris Discovered Casual and the Modern Home Began and The Essence of Style: How the French Invented High Fashion, Fine Food, Chic Cafes, Style, Sophistication, and Glamour. She lives in Philadelphia and, when in Paris, on the street where the number 4 bus began service on July 5, 1662.
This lively history charts the growth of Paris from a city of crowded alleyways and irregular buildings into a modern marvel. New Yorker The greatest strength of How Paris Became Paris is the richness of its subject matter. DeJean is fluent with the material and has conducted thorough research, with many interesting primary sources ... Well worth reading. Washington Post DeJean's depth and scope of research are impressive... Like its subject, DeJean's biography of Paris emanates charm and wit. What makes [her] analysis so intriguing is her capacity to weave strands of history together. With such rich context, How Paris Became Paris is more than a history: It's the best kind of travel guidebook. Bookpage Illuminating... Dejean obviously knows and loves Paris, and she provides coherent history that effectively explains the evolution of a city built by a few prescient men. Kirkus Reviews (starred review) Witty and engaging...With panache and examples from primary sources, guidebooks, maps, and paintings, she illustrates how Paris changed people's conception of a city's potential. Publishers Weekly (Top 10 Travel Books This Spring)