Thursday, May 02, 2013

Cara et Murder in rue de Paradis

Cara Black took this photo for the cover of her mystery, Murder in the rue de Paradis.
On Monday we both took photos of this doorway in the 11th...
Author Cara Black is in town to research and reconnoiter for her next book. I know Cara claims in interviews that she is NOT her main character PI Aimee Laduc but I'm not so sure. Hmmm...
They're both fearless, fierce and determined to get their killer or in Cara's case, the story.
Cara/Aimée doesn't miss a trick either. She spotted this bit of graffiti, 'amour' that I waltzed right by. The entry way above was once the stables for Marie Antoinettes horses.
If there's a sign announcing L'INTERDITE - PRIVEE - PERSONNE/ forbidden, private, no one allowed, Cara's on it like a cat on catnip.
I hung back hesitating...a scaredy cat.
One courtyard was filled with old workshops, some going back to the 17th century and certainly around during the 2nd world war. French craftsmanship has a way of turning up in Aimée Leduc mysteries. We always stopped for a look and a photo at any old workshops in passing. Paris' underbelly is Cara's turf not mine but it's great fun to follow along and discover new hidden places connected to the stories in her books.
We stopped for a coffee in a nondescript cafe.
Cara disguised herself in my new glasses (they look good on her) and my macaron bracelet...
Today I went looking for rue de Paradis in the book and explored the 10th arrondissement a bit. I stayed across from Brasserie Flo in this quiet passages des petites Ecuries mentioned in the book.
The book starts off in rue de Paradis and these china shops play a big role. Some are quite grand and carry Baccarat etc. This area is a mix of old world and Bobo. You'll find new Mexican and Corsican restos, the popular veggie Nanashi next to quite traditional china shops.

There's a Paris map of the quartier in the front of each of Cara's mysteries...
I wish they were more detailed and illustrated like this Gien china pattern I spotted in the Cristallerie boutique on rue de Paradis.
We parted ways at this doorway. Cara was entering another forbidden courtyard. I watched as her khaki trench coat and khaki converse drifted smaller and smaller into the vista...
The next day, like a sleepwalker, straight from the pool I went to Galeries Laffayette and bought myself a khaki scarf (12€), khaki straw hat (10€) and khaki T (Uniglo 9.90€).
You too can try pass yourself off as P.I. Aimée/Cara.
*And don't forget to read Murder in the rue de Paradis while your at it. You won't be able to put it down. These books are addictive. And no way can you skim or read back to front as I usually do.
You'll miss way too Paris secrets!


  1. I want to thank you for introducing me to Cara's books. I started with the most recent book and as soon as I was done I ordered everything I could find by her on Amazon. They are wonderful, and it makes this old gal want to move to Paris and become a detective, lol! Thanks again and love your blog.

    Terry Lillie

    1. I'm so glad you feel the same way I do Terry.

  2. I really love those shots of the back-streets of the 11th.
    I'm amazed that places like that still exist. Very atmospheric for a mystery novel!

    1. You would not believe hoe tmospheric it was there...
      A whole other side of Paris unknown to me.

  3. How cool! Merci pour les photos!

  4. The beautiful pictures and today's post were
    absolutely fabulous!
    Interesting and informative (my parents were radio broadcasters in Paris during WW2;wonder if they saw those buildings? The thought captures my imagination!)
    Carol, thank you for this and for introducing me to Cara's books!
    You've made it a very bon journee!

    1. Love the khaki hat, Carol - need one :) Gien porcelain, too and so fun to 'explore with you. thanks lillie and NataliaR

  5. Like Lillie, I learned about Cara Black from your blog too! Checked everyone out at my local library. Enjoyed everyone. Can't wait to read Black's next mystery to learn who daddy is. Hmmmm hope I didn't spoil anything for the readers

  6. Hi, Carol,

    First, sorry I haven't answered your other email. To say I was unwell is an understatement and I've had very limited computer time -- even trouble replying to those who commented on my last post. I hate it when you have four mandated days off work and all you can do is lay down, for the most part.

    SO, I will email Jerry (I thought you were joking!) and ask if he cares if I share his email contact info. He's a pretty private person and not God's gift to checking mail but I'll give you a great recommendation and hopefully you can connect. (You can find posts about Jerry on the Marmelade Gypsy -- there's one right after the top one from this link, and another on flea markets below that.

    OK, Cara B. I'm a little envious you got to hang with her! Love those books and have read Paradis, so it was fun to see photos from the area. Great move on getting the khaki -- I think you have all the adventure and curiosity of Aimee!

  7. Carol (and perhaps Cara, too, if you are reading the comments) what fun this was to join you all on a surveillance of atmospheric and historic potential scenes for a future Aimee novel.

    I would think that some Parisian tourist authority sort of office would be so, so glad that the very talented Cara Black has given her readers access to so many unseen Parisian quartiers, and also infused her novels with some fine historic info.

    All this and khaki accessories, too. What fun it is to visit here, Carol. It was fun to see those 'forbidden" entranceways being entered by a certain author. The 17th century workshops really got my attention. Is it not amazing to be able to possibly enter a workshop entered by others many centuries ago?

    Well, Carol, I could go on, but will yield this magical comment box to another fan. xo

  8. I am plotzing that you got to hang with Cara! So jealous, but so happy for you at the same time. I adore her books and have read them all and plan to re-read them. Thank you for sharing your adventure with her.

  9. I love Cara's books. I have read 5 but have more on my Kobo. I am leaving Paris after 2 months and I shall read them when I am back home and Paris-sick.

    1. I think I'm up to 5 in the series too..
      Cara said you do NOT have to read them in order and I agree.
      They are wonderful escape material indeed!

  10. Anonymous10:09 AM

    As I have told you earlier, I am thoroughly enjoying your references to and travels through Aimee's world. It is terrific you met, befriended, and sipped coffee with the author. I assume this relationship will grow. What fun!

  11. We have always loved the Duluc Detective sign on rue du Louvre. And now when I see it, I think of Aimee, too! All khaki? In disguise? How will I know you when next we meet? By the way, Valentino on Avenue Montaigne has camouflage lace and camo espadrilles in the window!

  12. Anonymous10:55 AM

    There is an interview with Cara in the recent 'Bookmarks' magazine.

  13. I have got to get cracking on starting her books..
    You have such interesting friends Carol..and an interesting vie!
    J'ai reconneu les lunettes et le mignon bracelet macaron immédiatement:)♥

  14. Have been a big fan of Cara for many years (since I heard her speak) and love all the books. Such an exciting day you had walking with her and seeing some of Aimees' Paris. Loved the pictures & your macaron bracelet.

  15. I have started reading "Murder in the Marais" it is my first Cara Black novel.
    I did my first museum today since arriving last Sunday, I went to the Jacquemart Andre enjoyed the visit and the lunch. I will now be on the look out for the MYSTERY WOMAN in khaki.
    I am living a dream spending a month in Paris (sans husband).

    Thanks once again, Ann

  16. Love this Carol. What a fantastic and fun time you had with Cara. Loved looking behind the scenes.

    Oh, can't believe you have a Macaron bracelet:-) Don't read my current post, it will just upset you.... :-) I attack Macarons:-)) Happy weekend lovely Carol!


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