Skip To Content

    40 Books That Will Make You Want To Visit France

    Oui, please.

    1. The Life Before Us, Romain Gary (Emile Ajar)

    2. The Ladies' Paradise, Emile Zola

    3. The Flowers of Evil, Charles Baudelaire

    4. Les Misérables, Victor Hugo

    5. The Fall, Albert Camus

    6. Bel-Ami, Guy de Maupassant

    7. Hunting and Gathering, Anna Gavalda

    8. The Mandarins, Simone de Beauvoir

    9. Zazie in the Metro, Raymond Queneau

    10. The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Victor Hugo

    11. The Elegance of the Hedgehog, Muriel Barbery

    12. Holiday in a Coma / Love Lasts Three Years, Frédéric Beigbeder

    13. In Search of Lost Time, Marcel Proust

    14. The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway

    15. Mythologies, Roland Barthes

    16. Paris to the Moon, Adam Gopnik

    17. My Father's Glory and My Mother's Castle, Marcel Pagnol

    18. The Horseman on the Roof, Jean Giono

    19. Letters from My Windmill, Alphonse Daudet

    20. Bonjour Tristesse, Françoise Sagan

    21. Tender Is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald

    22. A Year in Provence, Peter Mayle

    23. The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas

    24. The Count of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas

    25. Cyrano de Bergerac, Edmond Rostand

    26. Asterix, The Gaul, Goscinny and Uderzo

    27. Kiffe Kiffe Tomorrow (U.S.) / Just Like Tomorrow (U.K.), Faïza Guène

    If you want to read about places where tourists never set a foot, read Faïza Guène. In her first novel, Kiffe Kiffe Tomorrow, she drew inspiration from her own life. It follows a 15-year-old Muslim girl who lives in a housing project in the suburbs of Paris. It is a caustic, colloquial, and powerful portrait of the life on the outskirts of Paris and of the coming-of-age of a teenage girl in this environment.

    You'll love it if you like: The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾, Push, Precious.

    Buy it here.

    28. The Red and the Black, Stendhal

    29. Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert

    30. Three Strong Women, Marie NDiaye

    31. The Lost Estate, Henri Alain-Fournier

    32. Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Choderlos de Laclos

    33. Philosophy in the Bedroom, Marquis de Sade

    34. The Elementary Particles (U.S.) / Atomised (U.K.), Michel Houellebecq

    35. The Art of Sleeping Alone, Sophie Fontanel

    36. The Accursed Kings, Maurice Druon

    These books are the original Game of Thrones — even George R. R. Martin said so. The series of books follow several generations of kings and queens who have been cursed by the Grand Master of the Templar Order. All the books are based on the history of the French monarchy. They are filled with sex, incest, manipulation, torture, and murders.

    You'll love it if you like: Game of Thrones and The Tudors.

    Buy the first book here.

    37. Marie Antoinette, Stefan Zweig

    38. Fouché, Stefan Zweig

    39. Colonel Chabert, Honoré de Balzac

    40. Suite Française, Irène Némirovsky