Paris in July Wrap Up

This will be a long post, but you can scroll to the end if you want to see my July favorites 🙂

In July I read 31 books and watched 3 movies. 24 were Paris related, 2 were Gage read alongs, 2 were for homeschool, 1 devotional, and 1 for a book tour.

Here’s a link to my Paris in July posts 1 2 3 4 5 6 I’m so thankful to Tamara at Thyme for Tea for hosting such a fun event!

Here’s a rundown of what I’ve read this last week…

Sunday was ‘work’ reading. I’ve set aside this week for homeschool prep and this book was a great reminder of what I like most about homeschooling. I thought our first year went well, but I was determined to find a full curriculum this year to make it easier on me. It was nice to remind myself that I am pretty good at making learning fun, if only I keep the expectations at bay. Trying to homeschool like regular school is where many of our struggles came from last year and committing to someone else’s curriculum takes away the flexibility I love so much.

The Call of the Wild + Free: Reclaiming Wonder in Your Child’s Education by Ainsley Arment is a great book if you’re thinking about homeschooling or if you’re already homeschooling but need a little encouragement.

Not to let a July day go by without a little French love, I drank several glasses of Cotes du Rhone while I read the book. And I’ve included a few pics of the beautiful city of Lyon.
My most vivid image of Joan of Arc is from Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, so obviously, starting at this level 4, 48 page book is where I needed to be. Now I feel liked I have some context relating to the saints Joan the Maid (as she called herself) heard. I’m still not exactly sure what to make of her. Mad skills, mad followers or just plain mad? A tragedy any way you look at it.

Any Joan fans out there? What do you like about her story?

Since were nearing the end of Paris in July I threw in a few photos from Lyon, which is obviously not Paris, but certainly closer than where I am now!

I thought I was going to love this book, Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. A dark story about a serial killer with the best nose in the world, what’s not to love? Well, quite a bit actually.

In 19th century Paris, Grenouille was born in a fish market to a mother who immediately threw him in the trash just like she had all the ones before him. He survived (his mother did not) but barely, managing an okay existence until his ability to identify any smell landed him as an apprentice to a perfumer. And then his obsession and killing began.

I was amused by the first chapter or two but really struggled to finish this one. I got lost in the writing and that may have been due to the the translation from German, but maybe not since the story also bored me. Even a random city-wide public orgy couldn’t save it 🤷🏻‍♀️
Let’s start with our pics from Montmartre. 11 years later and I still remember our afternoon spent there because I tasted my first crepe with Nutella and banana and it was glorious.

I read Sarah’s Key. It’s been around awhile but I’ve never had a desire to read it even with all of the positive reviews of it. Dual storylines, one in 1942 an one in the early 2000s, both in France. A heartbreaking time in history as the French police rounded up Jewish families. It took me a little while to warm to the current storyline, but I did. I really liked this one.

Sammi and I both have the same feeling about this one The Grand Odalisque. A stylish, sexy graphic novel about two and then three women who steal paintings from Paris museums. I’m sure this has a wide fan base, but not so much here. I do like the occasional graphic novel, I’ve read two manga already this month, but prefer more substance. I did like the look of the oversized hardcover though which is half the battle in a picture book for adults 😄
Two fantastic picture books today! I recommend them both. Let’s start with the newest one.

Begin with a Bee is a beautifully illustrated book with a full circle story sure to please and educate kids. It’s about the rusty-patched bumblebee, native to the United States (honestly I never really knew the significance of this) and the first bee species put on the Endangered Species list in 2017. The story of a year in the life of a queen bee followed by 2 pages of facts and what you can do to help convinced me that I need to purchase this one after I return this to the library.

A Map to the World is a timely one if you are watching the Olympics with your kids. The family is part of the Hmong community in Minnesota. No it’s not about gymnast Sunni Lee, but I was struck by the coincidence. This is fiction, but based on the author’s own experience. It was touching and sweet. I do wish that there’d been some additional information about the Hmong people at the end of the book.

And drumroll please…

We finished our 1000 piece Paris Night & Day puzzle and had a fun time with it. I’ve also included my five favorite reads of the month, two being non-fiction!

Notre-Dame: The Soul of France by Agnes Poirier

My Life in France by Julia Child

The Little French Bistro by Nina George

Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

15 thoughts on “Paris in July Wrap Up

  1. Tamara says:

    Oh my gosh, it’s been so much fun sharing this journey with you (and Sammi). I dont read alot, but I love hearing about what others read – and this year, first time ever I think, we’ve had Paris themed puzzles – and j’adore ca! My wish list for next year is growing too….

    • stacybuckeye says:

      I had so much fun! Thank you for hosting and letting me join in with the rag tag posts. It was fun to post about more than books this month, something I haven’t done in quite a while.

  2. Diane says:

    If there was a prize for that Paris challenge , you should certainly be in the running. You did a marvelous job and so much so I now have several future reads that take place in Paris – because of you (and Gage). That cat photo is priceless LOL

    • stacybuckeye says:

      Sammi has become quite the poser. She jumped in my pic today too! Of course, she make it way more interesting so I don’t mind. There are SO MANY books set in Paris. I had no idea before I started.

  3. Vicki says:

    I’ve never joined Paris In July but the more I read post I read about it the more I think I should. It looks fun and I think I’d like a lot of the books you all read.

  4. Bill Rafalski says:

    Stacy, you had a busy and full month of reading. I am pleased that you were able to finish a 1000 piece puzzle of Paris.
    Last week you asked if anyone had read any Hemingway books. I have read all of the short stories and some of his novels. Hemingway did a masterful job of telling a story in very few words.

    • stacybuckeye says:

      I believe I’ve read some of his short stories too, but it’s been awhile, before blogging. The reason I started this blog in 2008 was so I could keep track of what i was reading. I wrote book reviews for another site before but it’s not around anymore so I can’t even check what books I wrote about.

  5. Deb Nance at Readerbuzz says:

    What a great month you had in Paris! You chose some great books, and I love that big, beautiful puzzle. So much fun.

    Call of the Wild + Free sounds like it’s a wonderful book for those considering homeschooling. You’ve certainly enjoyed that adventure last year, and I’m glad you are looking forward to next year’s adventures.

    I will look for Begin With a Bee.

  6. Gofita says:

    I have loved all your French books and puzzles this last month! Love that beautiful puzzle at the end. I even picked up a couple of French wines this month …
    I’ve had Sarah’s Key on my list for a long time. I think there’s a movie adaptation. I may have to pick it up.
    Good luck with your homeschooling this year! I can’t wait to see and hear about it!
    Enjoy your week. Stay safe out there!

  7. harvee says:

    Paris in July sounds like a great project. Sorry I couldn’t join, but I’m now reading a photographer’s memoir set in Paris, where she tries to make a living. It’s Paris: A Life Less Ordinary, a Memoir.

  8. thecontentreader says:

    Wow, you really managed to read a few books. I love The Paris Wife, and I also like Süskin’s book. Although I read it many, many years ago. Probably, because it was a different kind of murder mystery, although rather groteseque.
    I see you drink wine from my favourite French producer, Guigal. Very good. Their Gigondas is even better.

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