Personal Tour: Alan Furst’s Paris

Espionage writer Alan Furst shares the Paris locales that have inspired his novels.

Jun 30, 2009
Alan Furst, Paris

Photo of Alan Furst by Tim-Evan Cook

Alan Furst is unrivalled as the writer of espionage novels set during the World War II era. And it couldn’t be a book by Alan Furst unless part of it were set in Paris. Furst’s beautifully observed and meticulously researched novels, 10 so far in the series, are carried by their heroes—invariably ordinary men called to extraordinary deeds in an awful time. The books range across Europe, following Furst’s heroes across treacherous landscapes from the Baltic to Barcelona to Bessarabia, but they always return to Paris, where Furst lived, all told, for about a decade. Indeed, he describes his novels as “a series with different characters,” in which Paris is the fulcrum.

“Paris is the talisman, the height of European culture,” exclaims Furst, “which means it is a kind of paradise of the mind.” Here, writer John McLaughlin talks to Furst about the 1930s Paris he fell in love with and still cherishes.


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5 Comments about Personal Tour: Alan Furst’s Paris

  1. Pingback: SEEING THE WORLD THROUGH BOOKS » Blog Archive » Alan Furst–SPIES OF THE BALKANS

  2. Pingback: Brasserie Heininger « Family Book Club

  3. Robert L. Herschkowitz says:

    Now I know why I never found the Heininger Brasserie in Paris. AF is one of my favorite authors, and I have told him so in an e-mail. My dream was to take my Parisian friends to Heininger and sit at table 14 and order Choucroute Granie. Darn
    But thanks Alan, I really enjoy your books.
    Bob Herschkowitz
    Bellevue, WA USA

  4. Laszlo Gyermek says:

    Besides the published grasping photos of “everybody’s favorite City” , I feel that a famous quote of Alan Furst is worth of “dispensing”. It says something like : Of all of those who can afford to live anywhere most live in Paris . I never lived there, but visited it many times and could always feel its ” magic effect”… Further, could you send me the original version of Furst ‘s so fitting quote on the ” City of Lights” worth of pubiication?

  5. Jim says:

    Wonderful pictures!

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