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A Lion in Paris

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  633 ratings  ·  137 reviews
A Lion in Paris is widely regarded as the most accomplished book by multi-award-winning children’s author/illustrator Beatrice Alemagna. It tells the story of a lion who, bored by his rural life in the savanna, seeks excitement and opportunity in the City of Light. Upon arriving in Paris, the lion is disappointed to find that despite his size, people barely pay attention t ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published April 15th 2014 by Tate Publishing (first published June 1st 2008)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  633 ratings  ·  137 reviews

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Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a beautiful book to look through, I love Beatrice Alemagna's illustrations, wonderful colours and lines, humorous and interesting. I really enjoyed looking at the artwork and the clever way Alemagna has used photography and magazine images. I always find faces difficult so I made a mental note of how to get around this in a fun and sneaky way! I do like the way this book is so big and is landscape with the spine at the top. It's a very nice book to look through.

The story tells of how a l
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Parisians
The lion waited to see if he would terrify anyone. He wondered if people would start screaming, if they would step aside in horror as he passed or if they would pursue him with rifle shots.

This is a strange book. I picked it out because a.) it was huge and b.) it opens with the binding on top. So you are reading it "sideways," kind of. I like books that have a unique layout.

But the story was a dud. A lion is tired of living in Africa and goes to Paris. On a train. (WTF?) He wanders around Paris
Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture
I really enjoyed Alemagna's unique illustrations.

The story was odd, but not in a displeasing way. It would probably be a bigger hit with Parisian children, who apparently know this lion as a familiar landmark. I am unsure which lion she has in mind. It could be this one, which is sitting down (her lion is sitting at the end):

But on the other hand, this one has a face more like the one she drew.

Somebody send me to Paris to research this burning question, pleaseandthankyou.
Mar 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books

A Lion in Paris by Beatrice Alemagna is an oversized picture book with a very big ”Roaaaaaaar!”. A sweet story, voice, and roar about a lion finding his way and home in the world.

I love when a book breaks out of the typical format and mold. This book is big! BIG! It’s a bit of a challenge fitting it in the book bag, but so worth it. I flipped and flipped through this beauty five or six times.

The collage style art makes certain features and faces stand out--while the natural shades of browns, tan
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-s
I loved the illustrations, particularly the city scenes. In contrast, the story seems to have a 'dark' undercurrent and made me feel uneasy. At first, I thought it might be suitable for a quiet, sensitive child due to the serious tone (the lion is lonely, and then, scared by the big city) and use of language. However, I felt uneasy as the lion expresses his desire to terrify people and talks of "rifle shots" and imagines baguettes as "swords." I think it is because of the overall seriousness of ...more
Book Riot Community
This book is wide rather than tall, which makes it a wonderful medium for the broad landscapes of Paris. The artist incorporates drawings and collage to create a truly stunning book. Follow the path of a lonesome lion who decides to seek his own excitement by going to Paris. He sees the Eiffel Tower, the Seine, Montmartre, and the Métro, but can he find what he’s really looking for? -- Karina Glaser

From 5 Oversized Picture Books That Might Not Fit on Your Bookshelf But You Should Get Anyway: htt
Feb 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Readers Looking for Picture-Books Set in Paris / Beatrice Alemagna Fans
Originally published in France as Un Lion à Paris, and translated into English for the London-based Tate Publishing, this beautiful picture-book follows a lion who, becoming bored in his grasslands home, decides to travel to the city of lights. Here he sees many extraordinary things, experiences a range of emotions, from feelings of alienation at this strange new place to joy at the sense of connection to those around him. Eventually, he settles down in the center of the Place Denfert-Rochereau, ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
A lion leaves his grasslands and goes to Paris. At first, he feels lonely and ignored, but then, as he wanders the city, he begins to discover the magic of the city and make friends.

I love the part-drawing/part-cutout illustrations in this oversized book. The author perfectly captures all the feelings of a new visitor to Paris in this story.
Kristina Jean Lareau
I've truly started to appreciate how beautiful collage can be when combined with illustrators who are talented in other mediums. While sometimes the perspective-or awkward lack thereof in this title, it is clear that the illustrator is subverting the norm in favor of a stylistic choice. It turns out that I like it combined with the retro-nostalgic feel and muted tones. I think this origin story of the lion statue is entertaining and amusing, though I can't see it having as broad of an appeal to ...more
Jan 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
We had storytime today in French class.

This was a pretty cute little book, and it's very accurate to real-life Paris (as confirmed by my French teacher). Since I'm not a little kid, though, I found the multimedia illustrations a little creepy. I'm sure kids would think it's cool, though. My French teacher sure did.

Either way, I'll definitely be introducing my future children to France with this book!
Aug 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Rebecca by: Robin
Beautiful, large-scale, read-landscape-style picture book. The flattened perspective is much as a child might draw, but the collaged drawings are very advanced. Read if you love Paris, lions, or just a lovely piece of art!
Courtney Burns
Jan 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books, 2015
I don't particularly like collages but the story was simple and sweet enough for me not to mind too much. This would be a fun book to read if you were taking young children to Paris. ...more
May 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Dynamic fish-out-of water story
Aug 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrns
Beautiful art work!
Heidi Burkhart
Sep 07, 2019 rated it liked it
This oversized picture book would possibly be best used as examples of collage for young children.

The story line was vague as the Lion went around Paris highlighting some of the sights.
Chance Lee
Sep 19, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: storytime
The lion is ugly and the people are creepy like Angela Anaconda and I could not connect with this book at all. Sorry, Bea.
Haley Altizer
A Lion in Paris, written by Beatrice Alemagna, is a about a lion who one day got bored in his grasslands so he decided to set out on a journey. He wound up in Paris. The lion went all over Paris. He saw everything from the Eiffel tower to the Mona Lisa. The feel as though he may be judged for just walking around Paris as though it is nothing. In my opinion this book is teaching a good lesson to kids. It teaches the kids to not judge someone just because they may be different. Although, I don’t ...more
Jun 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
First of all, this book would make a fantastic read for classroom or library story-times. It's about a foot length and longer in width AND opens upwards so it'll be easy to show the illustrations to all the class. Also, each page and line of story text are paced 1:1 with only a couple pages of exceptions so it's continuity is easy to maintain in reading aloud. And the story is good! Very French lol.

A beautiful little story about a lion that decides to leave the grasslands and "set off to find a
Emmaline MacBeath
A lion is bored in his natural habitat so he leaves for the city. He was scared at first and worried that he might be shot by a rifle or that people would run screaming. But people seem not to notice him at all. So he roars to get attention. Then he goes outside. This makes him sad as he remembers his home and he turns gray. He walks along, sees the sight, and meets a few people. He feels much better now. He goes to a crossroads and stands on a plinth. The lion decides to stay because he likes i ...more
Danie Plott
Dec 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The book describes what a friendly lion would experience if he took a trip to Paris. He roams the city checking out a café, the Louvre, Parisians going about their day and carrying strange “swords” (depicted as baguettes) under their arms. Alemagna writes at the end of the book, “The lion in this story is inspired by the statue of a lion in the Place Denfert-Rochereau in Paris… the Parisians are so fond of this lion. I think it is because he looks very happy where he is.” The story is very simpl ...more
A Lion in Paris follows the journey of a lion through a city. He starts off in the grasslands and ends up on a plinth in the middle of a busy street. The story was inspired by the Lion Statue in Paris. This book was first published in French. What is so interesting about this book is everything about it. My copy is a 11-1/2" x 15" hard cover book! It's a gigantic book to go along with the big ambition of author/illustrator Beatrice Alemagna. This book is ranked #19324 on Amazon, which is pretty ...more
Jul 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Review originally posted on Children's Atheneum

Beatrice Alemagna's books have been published all over the world. She has many awards as an author and illustrator. A Lion in Paris is one of her many books that has finally made its way to America. Her mixed media illustrations give the book an almost Monty Python feel, but without the goof factor. Although I really like this book, I think something may have been lost in translation. I do not speak French myself, but I am sure that the nuances of t
A lion is bored and decides to travel to the city to find a new life. At first he is scared and doesn't really feel like he belongs, but as the day wears on, he begins to feel at home in the city and decides to stay. Kids will sympathize with the lion, as it is not always easy to go into new situations. Ordinary things can seem scary and overwhelming, but with time, things often seem to brighten and feel more comfortable.

This story is inspired by the lion statue in the Place Denfert-Rochereau i
Margo Tanenbaum
Jun 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In this enormous picture book, a young, curious, and bored lion wanders far from his savannah home to find a "job, love, and a future." Where else to go for these but Paris, where he is initially scared by the big city, but soon is enjoying a coffee at a famous Parisian cafe, riding the Metro, and visiting Parisian landmarks like the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower. Older children and adults are likely to appreciate the unusual and sophisticated artistic style of drawing mixed with collage but even ...more
Vincent Desjardins
The oversize, horizontal format and the amazing illustrations by author/illustrator Beatrice Alemagna make this picture book a fun read. With a minimum of text, Alemagna tells the story of a lonely lion, feeling isolated in the big city of Paris and how he discovers a place where he belongs and feels at home. Without being preachy, Beatrice Alemagna subtly demonstrates how a smile can cut through the fears of a lonely heart. The stunning, slightly retro style illustrations, which appear to be mi ...more
Jun 17, 2014 rated it liked it
This is a strange little book. And by little, I mean massively large book. It is large, and it opens bottom-to-top instead of right-to-left. It might be an interesting story to share with school-age kids in a one-on-one setting, but as for storytime it would be incredibly difficult to hold the book and share it.

Plus, because it was originally in French, I feel there are certain nuances of language that are missed in this translation.
This book has incredible illustrations! It is artistic from the words to the pictures, which are done in a medium that is unusual for a children's book. The pictures are amalgams of drawings, pictures cut out of magazines, and sketches. It is a very large book that opens at a 90 degree rotation from a typical book (ie: bottom to top instead of side to side), so it would be hard to hold and read, but sitting it on a table was just fine! ...more
First published in France in 2006.
Translated by Rae Walter in association with First Edition Translations LTD, Tate 2014

Beautifully done! A very large book that you read on its side. It's a sweet, droll (very French) story of a lion who is bored with his grasslands so leaves for Paris -- "he set off to find a job, love, and a future."

Wonderful images of Paris and how the lion eventually feels at home there.

First published in France, a wonderfully imaginative story inspired by the statue of a lion in Place Denfert-Rochereau in Paris. It's a huge book with each page filled with drawings of this lion as he explores the city, with the artist also using collage cut-outs of people walking, looking out windows, buildings, baguettes, and more! The lion is bored with his grassland home, and sets off to seek "a job, love and a future". Those who know Paris will love it even more! ...more
May 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
An imaginative origin story about the lion statue that sits in the Place Denfert-Rochereau in Paris.

Mixed media artwork brings to mind the animation of The Beatles' Yellow Submarine. A must-see book with artwork that causes readers to linger on each page and a heart-warming tale about a lonely lion that brings readers back for many a re-read.

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Beatrice Alemagna was born in Bologna, Italy in 1973. She graduated from the Istituto Superiore for industrial arts in Urbino, Italy. She has won numerous international awards for her illustration. She now lives in Paris, France, where she works as an author and illustrator as well as a designer of childrens books, posters and collages.

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