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We'll Always Have Paris: Sex & Love in the City of Light
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We'll Always Have Paris: Sex & Love in the City of Light

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  353 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
For more than a century, pilgrims from all over the world seeking romance and passion have made their way to the City of Light. The seductive lure of Paris has long been irresistible to lovers, artists, epicureans, and connoisseurs of the good life. Globe-trotting film critic and writer John Baxter heard her siren song and was bewitched. Now he offers readers a witty, auda ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published February 28th 2006 by Harper Perennial (first published 2005)
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Jul 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
I purchased this book as entertainment for my 9 hour flight to Paris, unfortunately, in my haste to the airport I forgot the book on my entry table. While meeting with a business contact at a cafe in the left bank, he introduces me to a gentleman who walks in. He's introduced to me as an Australian author who now resides in Paris with his French wife and daughter. This pleasant man joins us and remains chatting with me long after my business contact had departed. We had a wonderful conversation ...more
Jul 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Another great book about Paris, especially about the Paris of the Lost Generation (1920s and 1930s). Though it's written from a modern era, by someone who loves Paris, especially the more risque side of the city, and delights in exploring it's tawdry history. John Baxter also follows every romantic Paris-lovers dream ... though a successful journalist and writer in LA, he chucks it all to marry a Parisian woman he dated long ago and reconnected with, and moves to Paris with her, living in a pala ...more
Dan Adams
May 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interesting read on life living abroad in France, by John Baxter, a native-Australian who has moved to Paris and made France his new home, after falling in love with a fellow writer, a French national, with whom Mr. Baxter fathers a child and then, eventually marries. This book is chock-full of witticisms, literary and obtuse film references that will make you remember and smile; and somehow, strangely but oh-so enjoyably, the author's travelogue of sorts manages to keep coming round and round a ...more
Mar 19, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: biography
It's always disappointing when a book takes on topics that seem to be impossible to make boring and does so. Sex? Paris? What is going on? There is no excuse to write a book so bland!

Disorganized and uninteresting, it does not know if it wants to be a history of cinema and literature, a book about sex in Paris, or a memoir. It also cannot decide if it wants to be shockingly graphic or simply suggestive and chooses a lurid in-between area where no writing about sex should land.

The anecdotes abou
Molly Jean
This book, the author's first book about Paris, is OK but not as good as his second book about Paris, "The Most Beautiful Walk in the World" (which I read first). He covered a lot of the same ground in the second book so this book quite often seemed like a rehash of old news. Sometimes he went on way too long, specifically the Surrealists and Man Ray. And there were errors...even I know that the napkin over the head bit is done when one eats a roasted ortolan not when one sits down to a dinner o ...more
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: People who love anything about Paris
Shelves: around-the-world
This was by no means a bad book, I just did not enjoy it nearly as much as I had hoped to, or as much as I have enjoyed other memoirs. I guess part of the problem is that it wasn't entirely a memoir. Instead, it focuses a lot on Paris history. And not just any history, but the raunchy history. And that topic doesn't offend me, but that is not what I picked up the bok for. So I have to be honest, I was disappointed. I was also annoyed with the name-dropping. So you are an Australian who knows lts ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jul 26, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: france
Baxter interweaves the tale of his love story with Marie-Do, his love story with Paris, and the story of love and sex in Paris in this book, We'll Always Have Paris.

In the end, I had mixed feelings about the book. The stories of Baxter's meetings with the famous and the infamous in Paris had a sense of boasting that I didn't like. The stories of love and sex in Paris' past felt raunchy, more than I wanted to know, at times. I liked it best when Baxter told the story of his love affair with Mari
Feb 27, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: europe, essays, france, paris
Memories of Paris by John Baxter, an Australian writer. As an Aussie, he brings a different spin to the essays-about-Paris-genre. I like his emphasis on Paris' naughty and erotic past, but it was not as interesting as I was hoping for. One of the most interesting passages was about a Catholic restaurant in Pigalle catering to the area's prostitutes that had shut down. This book, like "Paris to the Moon" involves the impending birth of a child and how different that is in Paris, but it does not h ...more
Jun 06, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: travel-memoir
The author of this book is apparently an acclaimed film critic and biographer. His extensive knowledge of film, the visual arts and books made this a very different and interesting view of Paris.

Interwoven with this cultural tour of Paris is the author's own journey of meeting his french partner and his moving to Paris from Australia. Quite a cultural jump, and one which he obviously does very successfully.

The book is full of literary quotes and behind the scenes anecdotes, though I guess that'
I enjoyed reading this book because I love everything about Paris, however, it was a bit long-winded at times. It made a lot of references to fairly obscure authors, books, musicians, etc, many of which I had never heard of, and therefore, the references were lost on me. The storyline got lost among all the references and so the book felt choppy and I was getting tired of it by the end. Overall, I would still recommend this book to anyone that has an interest in Paris, although it wouldn't be my ...more
Jennell McHugh
Nov 19, 2008 rated it liked it
Great one-liners, anecdotes, insights! Do not be fooled by the title-- I've determined it more of a quip to what keeps the "City of Light" lit. Despite his career of critique, Baxter is extremely jolly and offers himself up to his readers. I spent the month of August dedicated to France and the enigmatic, expatriates and later-claimed luminaries evolving/deeeeevolving there and this was a great almost travelogue-ish reflection.
Nov 24, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2009
Is it a book on the author's charming experiences with his own French love or is it an interesting excursion into the sex and love (mainly sex) trivia of Paris? Well, it's both, but it should be one or another. Either theme can make its own book; no need to intertwine. Baxter writes well, at least, and anyone interested in Paris may eventually want to try this quick read.
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A lovely look at Paris from an outside who made it into a home. Fabulous verbiage and eloquence, while still remaining simple and witty. Showing Paris' two faces. The demure propriety, and the ecstatic reveller.
I read this book before my trip to Paris, as I thought it would provide a little insight into daily life as a Parisian amidst the sexual history of Paris. The author did just that and it made my trip just a little more meaningful.
Alison Smith
Dec 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
This Australian author married a French woman, and has lived in Paris for 15 years. He's an acclaimed film critic. Anecdotes about the arty and the notorious who have lived in Paris - plus some naughty pics in the photo section.
Jun 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
The book started off okay, and as usual, any story set in a Parisian scene is often allure enough for me. However I found it increasingly difficult to keep my interest in this book, and quit perhaps 40 pages short.
Aug 10, 2008 rated it liked it
This autobiographical collection of essays will show you the Paris you've never seen and inform you on the Paris you've never read about. His literary and historical references will keep you turning the pages.
September Dee
Nov 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed learning more about Paris during this time period. Humour, insights and food for thought for anyone who loves all things French. Well written and not your average book on Paris for sure. Enjoyed reading something definitely a little different.
Jun 29, 2012 rated it liked it
Interesting travel memoir. However, I found not having a frame of reference (having not been to Paris) a distinct disadvantage in assessing the book. That did make me want to visit (not that I didn't want to already), but not in the same way that the movie Midnight in Paris did.
May 30, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Was interesting to get into the Paris mind set, but maybe a bit too risque for general reading. Was most interested in his descriptions of the French health care system, apartments, mannerisms, summer homes, etc.
Jul 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: summer-2010
This was an unexpected surprise. It let me know that I am lacking basic French history, and I think my next group of historical biographies will be about some of the people I read in this tiny book. The French are an interesting bunch!
Jan 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
The author's good narrative skills move the story forward and involve the reader. I laughed out loud several times. A good light-hearted look at why people are attracted to the romance of Paris from one who is.
Butch Byers
Apr 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paris
Love John Baxter's style - engaging, self-deprecating, lots of cultural fish out of water moments but all presented with a super sense of wonder. Looking forward to his future stories about "Paris with teenagers"... Now that's a book w advice I could use!
Nm Boi
Aug 15, 2008 rated it liked it
This was a good read. Having just visited Paris I could relate to the places the writer was speaking about and the history of it all. Doesn't read like a book however and is kind of choppy in structure. Still, it was enjoyable if you are a fan of Paris and its brilliant history.
Feb 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Am re-reading this gem of a combination memoir/travel/romance/humor. Baxter paints vivid scenes which take you to the heart of the Parisians & Paris along with personal reminisences & observations which light up his chapters.
Sep 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Perfect for a Francophile, because of all of the history of romance, sex and cliche of France.
Jan 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Interesting read. A little racy, but an Australian in Paris is different.
Aug 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
Great book that explores the romance of Paris and it's love affair with sex.
Apr 30, 2007 rated it liked it
A lovely--and refreshingly uncensored--account of a man's move to Paris. The author is a film scholar and avid reader, so his bibliography is terrific, and he references many terrific French films.
May 13, 2013 rated it did not like it
Well i picked it up, being lured by Paris. Found the narration quite boring, couldn't get past the third chapter. Oh well maybe i'll attempt it again when i have the time..
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John Baxter (born 1939 in Randwick, New South Wales) is an Australian-born writer, journalist, and film-maker.

Baxter has lived in Britain and the United States as well as in his native Sydney, but has made his home in Paris since 1989, where he is married to the film-maker Marie-Dominique Montel. They have one daughter, Louise.

He began writing science fiction in the early 1960s for New Worlds, Sci
More about John Baxter...

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