Harry's Reviews > Paris to the Moon

Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik
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's review
Nov 21, 2009

After reading a book about Watteau and another by the French novelist Simenon, I zipped through this book as a way to continue the oo-la-la. Gopnik's prose is like beautiful stacked fruit and vegetables at the greatest market you've ever been to. It's colorful, seemingly endless, good for you but delicious. It makes you think of the moment and where the moment came from. Sometimes it seems too abundant, as Gopnik piles simile upon simile, then going into a discourse about how comparing things disrespects the things being compared, but following through his argument winding up with the idea that it's the ultimate sign of respect. One realizes that his arguing with himself and trying to take a stance on everything doesn't come from his neighbors in France, but was reinforced by it.

There are essays on French war criminals, food, soccer, pregnancy and childcare, and shopping. Gopnik is insightful on all these topics because he's constantly comparing life in Paris to his old life in New York, and though it's clear his life in America doesn't look much like my life in America, I enjoyed the ride and could feel solidarity with someone who just wants Chinese food delivered at all hours of the night.

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