See, I love France. I love the food and the art and the cinema. I love the cobblestone streets strewn with leaves and dog poo alike, and I love the mega-stores and tiny boutiques. I appreciate their massive anal attitude towards their language, and am utterly envious of French women who all seem born with the Instant Style Gene. Whenever I go to France, the minute I step off the plane, I feel like I’ve come home.
In other words, I don’t get the semi-automatic “anti-French, anti-revolution bias” that Jennie at Dear Author says is “common to most everyone but the French”, but that, honestly, I think is really only common to English-speakers. (Stereo)typically-speaking. So I’m happy whenever I read a book that’s mainly set in France. (The temporary excursions just, somehow, don’t count.) Pre-Louis XIV is pretty thin on the grounds, but there’s always Susan Carroll’s witch series, starting with Silver Rose, and the second book of the Renaissance Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett. In the pre-Revolutionary 18th century there are Georgette Heyer’s classic These Old Shades and Anne Stuart’s recent Ruthless. Turn-of-the-century, I’ve read Susan Johnson’s Forbidden and Judy Cuevas’ Beast, and heard amazing things about Bliss and Dance. All are really good books.