Friday, May 23, 2014

Murder in Pigalle and Cara Black's Sunglasses


I always fall in love with mystery author Cara Black's glasses. When we met last Saturday it was a coup de foudre/instant love all over again.
Find me these tortoiseshell sunglasses from H and M ($8.00) PBers and the 5" x 7" watercolor above is yours I kid you not.
Cara Black led me on a Magical Mystery tour of the Ile Saint Louis where her main character, stylish Parisian Aimée Leduc lives and grew up.
We hit many high points like sculptress Camille Claudel's house on quai d'Anjou.
Someone was fool enough to open a door and fearless Cara waltzed in with all the aplomb as if she lived there. Nothing new for Cara but trepidation for yours truly.
Another private courtyard at No.39 holds the theatre de Saint Louis. Naturally it plays a roll in private investigator Aimée escaping a villain during a dress rehearsal.
P.I.Aimée has a penchant for extravagant designer shoes usually bought on sale at a Vide Grenier or the soldé
She also has a penchant for falling down on cobblestones/pavé and breaking her expensive heels. This is a bad habit I've picked up, though I'm wearing sensible flat Arcopedicos. Go figure. Some people are home breakers. Aimée Leduc is a heel breaker.
We catch Aimée's concierge Madame Cachou out walking 'Miles Davis' round the block while Aimée escapes murderers and break heels.
17th century historic church Saint-Louis-en-l'lle where Aimée was baptized. We took a good look at the baptismal fount. A definite don't-miss on the island at 19 bis, rue Saint-Louis-en-l'lle.
I have complained repeatedly to Cara that Aimée simply does not eat enough pastry on the ile Saint-Louis or off, but I'm barking up the wrong tree. PLEASE give us some pastry in the next mystery Cara! Do you agree or not PBers? Any particular pastry you would like to see Aimée eating btw? Here's your chance to get in a word with the author!
Where Aimée learned her letters in grade school.
Quite a few dunks in the nearby Seine turn up in Cara's mysteries.
Cara points out exactly where a body was found near Pont Sully in Murder on the Ile Saint-Louis.
Aimée herself ends up in very hot water in that mystery but no spoilers allowed...ahem.
Cara shows me the public baths on rue de Deux Ponts where some of Paris' underbelly come for a scrubdown in the Leduc series.
She also points out where Hemingway bought his fishing tackle on rue Sully, though he has yet to turn up in any Aimée Leduc mysteries. Hmmm...
Cara happily poses by one of the most prestigious, private hotel particuliars on the island, Hôtel de Lauzun
Someone opens a gate and 'in like Flint', Cara wafts with yours truly tagging along nervously. The guard queries if we are supposed to be there and Cara nods yes. Doodly-doodly-do
Since Hotel de Lauzun is in the book I must see it right? We head upstairs and then down and out the gate. The guard would like to pick a fight with us, rightly sensing we don't belong there but Cara wafts on with me looking back and crossing my fingers we don't get arrested.
We then waft over to chez moi where there is no interference or guards and Cara marks up things I should mention to you in both books, Pigalle, her 14th and Ile Saint-Louis her 7th.
Dear PBers if you are lucky enough to meet darling Cara at a book signing, please do not mention yours truly. Just fawn over her deservedly and BUY her books for heavens sake! They're awfully fun reading (did I mention that?). We're both very lucky to have Cara take us round the Ile Saint-Louis on a private tour non?

39 comments:

  1. I love(!!!) the Aimée Leduc books, thank you for this post. I think of the books as a trip to Paris with the price of a plane ticket. How fun to follow in Cara Black's steps.

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    1. Quite literally falling in Cara Black's steps. Very cool.

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  2. Loved the trip around the Leduc neighborhood! The books are great fun, thanks for introducing us to them.

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  3. I have Murder on the Ile Saint-Louis on my pile of to read books right now. Thinking it will be a good beach read this next month. Love her books. Love this neighborhood to walk and explore. How I would love walking into those open gates too.

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    1. "Yr a braver man than I Gunga din".

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    2. I walked through gates here in Paris once and instantly felt like hundreds of eyes were on me. Gulp.

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  4. I'm incredulous that you managed to write about the Hotel de Lauzun without featuring the world's greatest downspouts! The city of Paris owns it now, so I'm sure you could rent it for a shindig! Please invite us if you do!

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    1. http://parisbreakfasts.blogspot.fr/2014/02/monthly-belles-lettres.html
      I showed Paris' most famous 'downspouts' up close here.
      No time with Cara for details outside the gates.
      When she wafts, you mustn't be far behind or you miss out.
      After we ere walking Very fast to get away.

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  5. Best of fun exploring with you, Carol, comme toujours! And you make great chocolat chaud. Thanks everyone!

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    1. Thanks. Cara! Next time i'll skip the cacao nibs. I promise.

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  6. Gloria - Sacramento4:18 PM

    I can't wait for the next book! What will happen when we run out of arrondissements Oh my!

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  7. D'accord! We must have pastry! A detective can not live by murder alone!

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    1. Agreed! Bring on the pastries.

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  8. What an amazing day!!! I'm off to H&M for you. A tout a l'heure.

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  9. Anonymous6:16 PM

    I'm waiting for Cara to tell us what flea markets Aimeee shops for her fabulous finds
    cigalechanta

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  10. This is the best I can do now..http://m.ebay.co.uk/itm/221251984145

    But will look here next time I am there..here..
    Love her books because of you..
    PS I love being inspired to like something enough to purchase..
    You have that inspiration on me:-)
    Those glasses are so you in a different shade of red..belle aquarelle...

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  11. so cool, thanks! I'm actually listening to Murder in Pigalle right now, loving every second of it. Apart from Cara's usual awesomeness, the narrator is so so good!
    One day, I did also a private courtyard as the gate was open, but as soon as I was in, it closed, and I could not figure out out to get out!! I had to wait for someone else to come in...

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    1. Brave you!
      There is usually a 'porte' button to open frony doors but it can be illusive ;))
      Happened to me too.

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  12. Carolyn7:56 PM

    That water glass painting is amazing !

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  13. Oh Carol, that tour must have been such fun. I'm looking forward to reading Cara's newest. Must find out what's been happening in Aimee's busy life.

    Those sunglasses are rather cool. Tortoiseshell frames are always so chic.

    xo

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  14. How daring, and sounds like such fun.

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  15. I love the Cara Black tour of your island! Such a gorgeous place to be!
    You're very lucky - after all, Hem shopped there :)

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  16. Sure do hope Aimee loses the high heels now that she's preggers -- and a few pastries wouldn't hurt, either. (May I have that citron one, please?) And believe me, if I had an H&M here, I'd be out the door and back already, glasses in hand!

    I've read all of Cara's books except Pigalle -- waiting for it in the distinctive same-style edition paperback to go on the shelf with the rest of my collection! Love the books, the background, the locations -- and that is yet ANOTHER reason why I love this post that shows them all to me "really!" Merci!

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  17. I haven't read Pigalle either. I re-read Le Marais when I was renting an apartment on rue du Pas de la Mule. I could imagine Aimée crawling over my roof. Ile St-Louis is one of my favourite spots. I especially like the church on Palm Sunday when there is a procession.

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  18. I will now look over the edge of the bridges of the Seine with trepidation, anticipating dead bodies floating along. Quelle nightmare. Looks like a fun stroll.

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  19. Oh yes!!Tarte au Framboise!!!Perhaps the ONLY thing that could more enliven Cara"s wonderful books!!What a lovely lady!Carol,you are so right!How fortunate we
    are to go on this tour!
    Thank you both!

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  20. Norma Jean3:20 PM

    ..............a macaron!!:)

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  21. Cara, more pastry please, make mine lemon. :) This was fun.


    Madonna
    MakeMineLemon

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    1. If only she would listen
      then again no wonder cara is skinny as a cat...
      No lemon tartes for Cara !!!

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  22. I've met Cars before and she is charming! I have read all of her Aimees and own most of them!

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  23. Being with Cara Black must be such a hoot! looks like so much fun!….

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  24. Anonymous9:24 AM

    Tarte normande aux pommes svp

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  25. I was at H&M on Sunday and scoured their selection for you but didn't find these! Sorry - will keep my eyes peeled.
    xx

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  26. Before I left for Paris, last wek i looked for these sunglasses online. I have no stores within 75 miles of my home. All i found were the black one. Sorry!

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  27. I'm sure I have seen those sunglasses on Etsy quite recently.

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  28. i look forward to the next since i have caught up on all of them....when?

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  29. I, too, am absolutely hooked on this series. I always consider it my free trip to Paris. Well, extremely low cost trip, anyway. I did enjoy this tour, as well.

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