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Paris, My Sweet: A Year in the City of Light (and Dark Chocolate)

Paris, My Sweet: A Year in the City of Light (and Dark Chocolate)

3.8 25
by Amy Thomas

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"From the New York cupcake wars to the perfect
Parisian macaron, Thomas's passion is palpable,
her sweet tooth, unstoppable."—Elizabeth Bard, bestselling author of Lunch in Paris

Forever a girl obsessed with all things French, sweet freak Amy
Thomas landed a gig as rich as the purest dark chocolate: leave
Manhattan for Paris to


"From the New York cupcake wars to the perfect
Parisian macaron, Thomas's passion is palpable,
her sweet tooth, unstoppable."—Elizabeth Bard, bestselling author of Lunch in Paris

Forever a girl obsessed with all things French, sweet freak Amy
Thomas landed a gig as rich as the purest dark chocolate: leave
Manhattan for Paris to write ad copy for Louis Vuitton. Working on the Champs-Élysées, strolling the charming streets, and exploring the best patisseries and boulangeries, Amy marveled at the magnificence of the City of Light.

But does falling in love with one city mean turning your back on another? As much as
Amy adored Paris, there was part of her that felt like a humble chocolate chip cookie in a sea of pristine macarons. PARIS,
MY SWEET explores how the search for happiness can be as fleeting as a salted caramel souffle's rise, as intensely satisfying as molten chocolate cake, and about how the life you're meant to live doesn't always taste like the one you envisioned.

Part love letter to Paris, part love letter to New York, and total devotion to all things sweet, PARIS, MY SWEET is a treasure map for anyone with a hunger for life.

"Like a tasty Parisian bonbon, this book is filled with sweet surprises."—David Lebovitz, New York Times bestselling author of The Sweet Life in Paris

"Amy Thomas seduces us in the same manner that Paris seduced her —one exquisite morsel at a time."—Nichole Robertson, author of Paris in Color

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Traveling foodies of the world, rejoice-Thomas provides the sweet scoop on Paris and New York in this mouth-watering memoir. While an associate creative director at ad agency Ogilvy & Mather, Thomas was offered a position as copywriter on the Louis Vuitton account in Paris. So she left her life in New York-where an insatiable sweet tooth had made her a veritable expert on the city's bakeries and chocolatiers-to live in the foodie mecca of the Second Arrondissement and work in a gorgeous building on the Champs-Élysées. During her quest to find the best breads, desserts, and cheeses at the myriad pâtisseries, boulangeries, and bistros, Thomas revels in the historic and cultural joys of Paris-the parks, markets, and of course the gorgeous Canal Saint-Martin. Thankfully, her vivid descriptions of baguettes, macaroons, and baba au rhum do more than merely tempt-supplemented with an extensive list of Thomas' favorite bakeries in Paris and New York, readers can get their own taste of two cities, though Thomas' is the tale to beat. Maps.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the Publisher
"Like a tasty Parisian bonbon, this book is filled with sweet surprises." ---David Lebovitz, author of The Sweet Life in Paris

Product Details

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5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

Read an Excerpt

I guess you could say my story began with a bicycle and some bonbons. At the time, it just seemed like a fun summer vacation: it was 2008, and I did an apartment swap with someone in Paris. I had already visited earlier that year, but what can I say? When the invitation to spend time in the City of Light (and Dark Chocolate) comes knocking, my first response is "pourquoi pas?"

I've just always been one of those girls. I spent a college semester in Paris, and it was then I fell in love with the city's beauty and grace—and Nutella street crepes. When I returned to the States, I wore silk scarves and a black beret; the only thing missing from my clichéd uniform were the Gauloises cigarettes.

I binged on French films, schooling myself in nouvelle vague directors, falling especially hard for Eric Rohmer, before contemporary movies like The City of Lost Children and Amélie seduced me. I studied the Lost Generation, reading Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and Janet Flanner, and built a mini-library so I'd never be far from Paris. I had books about cats in Paris, dogs in Paris, expats in Paris; Parisian interiors, Parisian gardens, and Parisian cuisine, organized by neighborhood; bistros of Paris, pâtisseries of Paris, and shopping in Paris. I became a regular at a café in my neighborhood in San Francisco simply because it served café au lait in little bowls instead of mugs, and I had more Eiffel Tower tchotchkes than I am comfortable admitting.

I was just another Francophile, like you. Until that summer of 2008.

That trip was the first time I was in Paris during the summer, and it was absolutely amazing. I loved that it was light out until after 10:00 p.m., giving me several extra hours to roam back-alley streets and sit by the Seine. I was excited to discover new neighborhoods like Bercy and Canal Saint-Martin and new "bistronomy" restaurants like Le Verre Volé and Le Comptoir du Relais. I got sucked into the semi-annual sales, les soldes, and hooked on Vélib's, the public bike-sharing system.

And then there were all the chocolatiers.

By that time, I was just as obsessed with sweets as I was Paris. I had a column in Metro newspaper called "Sweet Freak" and a blog by the same name. I knew every bakery, dessert bar, gelateria, tea salon, and chocolatier in New York City. When I traveled, I built my itinerary around a town's must-visit sweet spots.

So naturally during that week in Paris, I researched the city's best chocolatiers, mapped out a circuit, and then Vélib'ed between eight of them. It was exhilarating and exhausting, not to mention decadent. It was a chocoholic's dream ride. I wrote about my Tour du Chocolat for the New York Times, and it went on to become a top-ten travel story for the year. As I was secretly plotting a way to spend more time eating chocolate in Paris, the in-house recruiter of the ad agency where I worked casually walked into my office one day and asked if I wanted to move to Paris. I was getting transferred to write copy for the iconic fashion label Louis Vuitton. It all happened so suddenly, and seemed so magical, that I had to ask: was Paris my destiny or sheer force of will?

I guess it goes to show that you just never know where life will take you. You search for answers. You wonder what it all means. You stumble, and you soar. And, if you're lucky, you make it to Paris for a while. Here's what happened when I did.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
"Like a tasty Parisian bonbon, this book is filled with sweet surprises." —-David Lebovitz, author of The Sweet Life in Paris

Meet the Author

Amy Thomas is a New York—based writer who, for two lucky years, got to call Paris home. In addition to working as a copywriter in advertising, she writes about food, travel, design, and fashion for various publications such as the New York Times, National Geographic Traveler, Town & Country, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. She is slightly obsessed with sweets.

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Paris, My Sweet: A Year in the City of Light (And Dark Chocolate) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I did so enjoy reading of two great cities, wonderful treats to savour. The writing carried me along side her. The swearing, more towrds the end, did leave me with a sour taste. (Please leave it out in your next writing.)
Nora_Ann More than 1 year ago
One of my new favorite books. I hope to go to Paris someday!
sandiek More than 1 year ago
Amy Thomas fell in love with Paris on a trip in her late teens. She dreamed of living there, and after years of work in the advertising field, she was offered a dream job. She could take a contract to work on the advertising of Louis Vuitton, but would have to move to Paris and work there. Amy jumped at the chance as it was her dream come true. Amy's other passion was quality desserts. She had, as a side interest, created a blog about sweets and where to find the best ones in New York. She dreamed about expanding this with all the wonderful new sweet shops and French confections she would find in Paris. Amy spent her first weeks there touring the famous shops and discovering new ones. Paris My Sweet combines both the story of Thomas's two years in Paris and her love of anything sweet. Each chapter talks about an issue common to those starting a new job, moving to a new city, or being a woman on the cusp of middle age who is still single and adventurous but starting to wonder about love, marriage and children. Each chapter also features a category of sweet such as the madeline or cupcakes or macarons. At the end of each chapter is a page outlining the best places to find that category of sweet, both in New York and in Paris. Paris My Sweet will appeal to a wide variety of readers. It is great travel writing. Foodies will be thrilled to read about the variety and intensity of flavors available in the dessert category as well as the guide to the best places to find specific categories. Overall, the book will appear to women working on finding their place in the world, finding that mix of work and family/love that works for them. Throughout the book, Thomas is revealed as a woman questioning her life but ultimately satisfied with her choices, a woman with a zest for life and who loves to share with others. This book is recommended for all these categories of readers.
JCarey More than 1 year ago
Read this book while traveling in Paris for the first time. Interesting to see the differences between traveling there and living there. Also enjoyed seeing the actual shops she was talking about in the book. The guide in the back was the best because I didn't have to search through the chapters to remember a shop name. Will use next time I visit NYC and enjoyed the comparisons between both cities.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed the time I spent with the author as she explored life, love and desserts! I appreciated that it seemed an honest approach. I will hope to have my NOOK with me next time I get to Paris so I can use the lists with addresses to find some highlighted sweets!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This memoir of the author's time in Paris is an absolutely charming, witty, sad, delicious (so many bakeries to visit!), can't-put-down-book. Amy writes so well and describes her surroundings in such vivid detail that the reader will feel like she is right there with her; I wish! Buy this.
CGaleR More than 1 year ago
I loved the book. I visited Paris a week last year, and will return for a week this year. I love to order something from the menu and just enjoy the experience. And the sweets.......oh, the sweets. I've bookmarked (on my Nook Tablet) many, many pages within this book, highlighting endless sweet options for my next visit to the fabulous city. I have friends who have lived in Paris for three months and I know the sadness they experience when leaving the city to return home to the USA. The city is magical, and the author shares that on page after page of this book. With Paris map in hand, thank you Amy for the inspiration to endlessly search for just 'one more bite...'
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pros- This book proved to be a wonderful guide to exploring sweets in Paris and New York. The writer very obviously knows what she's talking about when it comes to food. Myself, being a total foodie, found this book extremely helpful and mouth-watering.  Cons- The author had a very…negative and condescending attitude, which makes for a difficult read. I get it, it can be difficult to adjust in a new city. But for goodness sake! She's living in Paris, doing her dream job, and getting to sample the world's most delicious food! I was expecting to be refreshed with this book, not drudged down. Also, another thing I found annoying was her CONSTANT debate between living in New York or Paris. The comparisons and dialogues about which place she should chose is interesting at first, but quickly get old by the 10th (or 20th) time. Another negative- the completely unnecessary use of foul language.  To conclude, there are zillions of novels about Paris. If I'd known about the amount of pessimism and complaining I'd be subjected to by reading this "bon bon of a book". I would've chosen a different Paris themed novel. I would have really enjoyed reading a food guide to these cities by the author. She truly had good insight when it comes to exploring a city trough food. Instead, I read a food guide/teenage-girl-level diary laced with complaints and poor-me complexes.   
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Talonblaze 20 moons tom light brown et cream coloured with black star on left ear et green eyes kin wacky but lonely Timber by Pitbull ft. Ke$ha &#9788 ask
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Maertel More than 1 year ago
This tale of another wanna be rich girl looking for love in Paris could have been wonderful if her values had gone deeper. Are we really supposed to feel bad because she cannot afford another dead baby animal skin purse? Does she really not get that French women don't want her to seduce away the few remaining good French men and so do not invite her into their dining rooms...? Maybe if she had cared about other people or animals (foie gras cookies, eh?), she would have met a Good Guy, French, American, or African, non? Bien sur, the sweet descriptions are inspiring.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great little book. Entertaining with lots of tips re Paris and New York.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A book about living in the 2 greatest cities in the world. What could be better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Paris my Sweet is a beautiful book. What I like about this book is that I love how Amy Thomas described how she felt, the sweet treats, and the city. I reccomend this book to people who love the City of Light.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am so glad I saw this book in the B&N store just by chance! I am partial to all things French since I was a French major and studied abroad there too but it was reading her sincere note to her friends and family at the beginning of the book that I knew I just had to get this on my Nook! This is my first Amy Thomas book and I am a fan. Her descriptions of desserts both in NYC and Paris are so vivid it made me go out to local bakeries just to quench my sweet cravings! I love that she includes addresses of all the places she writes about so her readers can actually go to the places. NYC is close so I will definitely get to many of those but Paris is in the near future and I can't wait to try out all those decadent sweets she describes! I am a busy working mom so this is the perfect kind of book to read just for the fun of it. Nothing too deep or thought provoking but this was a great book to relax and unwind to with a nice hot cup of tea (and a sweet treat) after a stressful day!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a DELIGHTFUL, fun read! Paris may be out of reach right now but I'm on the hunt for French Bakeries and noted chocolatiers! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very fun! Makes you want to go to Paris!
SpartyGirl More than 1 year ago
I loved this book and Denise Acabo was everything she said and more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
roena More than 1 year ago
This book took me a long time to read, when that happen's it means it just doesn't "thrill" me. I loved the story about people, about describing Paris, and NY----but (yes there is a but here) too, too, too much about the descriptions of the food. It got really boring after about 2 chapters, and every chapter is filled with it. The book went into depth of the preparation, presentation, taste of the wonderful and smell of a chocolate chip cookie, and a "prestine" macarons. What does that even mean, a "prestine macaron???" What did I learn from this book? That deserts are wonderful.....I think I already knew that. My advice is if your trying to lose weight, or even maintaine your weight, don't read this book.
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