A Love Affair in Paris: 11 Novels Set in France

French MacaroonsIt’s easy to fall in love with Paris, and many of the best contemporary novels set in France celebrate love — or at least, a love affair with France. In this installment of books set in France, you’ll find a multitude of genres, including literary fiction, suspense, mystery, young adult, and mainstream fiction. Earlier lists in this blog feature historical fiction, as well as a general list of favorite books set in France.

The first post about books set in France garnered so many comments and suggestions that I promised to follow-up with books gleaned from readers’ comments, along with a few of my personal favorites.


Contemporary Novels Set in France

This list features several book series set in France, such as those from Cara Black, Laura Florand, and Stephen Clarke. For these I’ve included the first book in the series, but subsequent titles deserve exploration, too.

Each of these authors captures different nuances about France. For example, M.J. Rose explores perfumery, while Laura Florand delves into chocolate making. Stephanie Perkins captures the young adult experience in Paris. Cara Black’s forte is murder, and Stephen Clarke’s books will have you laughing out loud in no time. And who can resist the suspense of Dan Brown?

I have a special affinity for france, and three of my books are partly set in France, including the historical Scent of Triumph, the contemporary Flawless, and a second historical from St. Martin’s Press coming soon.

The next list will feature readers’ favorite memoirs and nonfiction books on style, perfume, and culinary delights. Stay tuned for more by following this blog, and be sure to leave your cherished books in the comments!


 The Book of Lost Fragrances: A Novel of Suspense Reprint Edition by Rose, M. J. (2013)

 Hidden in Paris by Corine Gantz

 It’s Not Love, It’s Just Paris by Patricia Engel

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

Murder in the Marais: An Aimée Leduc Investigation, Vol. 1 (Aimee Leduc) by Cara Black

French Lessons: A Novel by Ellen Sussman

Lunch in Paris: A Love Story, with Recipes by Elizabeth Bard


A Year in the Merde by Stephen Clarke

A Wedding in Provence by Ellen Sussman

And a few more we love:

Paris Was the Place by Susan Conley

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand

Want more book suggestions? Be sure to sign up for our updates (no spam, I promise!), and receive Say Oui to Paris: 35 Best Books Set in France! And, if you long for the mystery of Venice, check out this related post: 27 Great Books Set in Venice.







9 thoughts on “A Love Affair in Paris: 11 Novels Set in France

  1. Hi Jan, I really love your site and blog!

    I wanted to introduce you to my book “Strum” which is a historical fiction set partially in France. It starts out in 1950 Quebec and Paris, then goes back some 100 years to a convent in the Haute Provence and from there it travels across 3 continents and a century and a half, following two classical guitars and a family whose artistic and spiritual legacy is imbued in those instruments. Here is my website: http://www.nmcyoung.com and I’m on Amazon, if you are interested in finding out more.

    By the way, I am so pleased to hear you started out as a indie author and then recently got picked up by St. Martins Press! That’s my dream… Working now on getting an agent. My book just placed in the Great Northwest Book Festival competition… My first. Anyhow, just wanted to introduce myself and perhaps interest you in my book for your list, hailed by Kirkus as “A beautifully written, engrossing family epic…”


    Nancy Young

  2. Hi Jan, As promised, I am adding the excellent trio of books by Diane Johnson: Le Divorce, L’Affaire, Le Mariage. All are largely set in Paris and are highly recommended. . . not only very witty and entertaining, but also eye-opening about French culture and the status of women under the Napoleonic Code. Some of the laws have eased since these books were written.

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