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Head of Zeus
City of Light
04 Mar 2021 * PAPERBACK * £12.99 * 9781838932084

An account of the reinvention of Paris in the mid-nineteenth century as the most beautiful, exciting city in the world – a position it has never relinquished.

Non Fiction / HBLL (Modern History)
Extent: 184 pages  Format: 200 x 135 mm Illus: 40 integrated colour illustrations
Exclusive: GB AU NZ IN ZA SG   Not for sale: CA US
Voyagers
Magna Carta
Magna Carta
Dante's Divine Comedy
The Rite of Spring
The French Revolution
Stonehenge
Stonehenge
Railways
Messiah
Guernica
Hadrian's Wall
Also in The Landmark Library series
City of LightThe Landmark Library, 10by Rupert Christiansen

A sparkling account of the nineteenth-century rebuilding of Paris as the most beautiful city in the world, as part of the stunning Landmark Library series.

'This really is an impressive book' Sebastian Faulks.

'Brisk, vivid and unexpectedly stirring... No one writes as evocatively and entertainingly about Paris as Christiansen does' Mail on Sunday.

'Every page is a pleasure, every building, every gas lamp brought shimmering to life... Don't board the Eurostar without a copy' The Times.

'A wonderful book, amazingly vivid... But also a truly original work of scholarship' Theodore Zeldin.

In 1853 the French emperor Louis Napoleon inaugurated a vast and ambitious programme of public works, directed by Georges-Eugène Haussmann, the prefect of the Seine. Haussmann's renovation of Paris would transform the old medieval city of squalid slums and disease-ridden alleyways into a 'City of Light' – characterised by wide boulevards, apartment blocks, parks, squares and public monuments, new railway stations and department stores and a new system of public sanitation.

City of Light charts a fifteen-year project of urban renewal which – despite the interruptions of war, revolution, corruption and bankruptcy – would set a template for nineteenth and early twentieth-century urban planning and create the enduring and globally familiar layout of modern Paris.

Rupert Christiansen is the opera critic and arts columnist for the Daily Telegraph. His books include Tales of the New Babylon: Paris in the Mid-19th Century and Romantic Affinities: Portraits From an Age 1780-1830. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1997.

The story of the making of modern Paris.

A thrilling story of urban renewal punctuated by German invasion, financial scandal and civil war.

Author a brilliant chronicler of Second Empire France.

MARKET: Graham Robb; Andrew Hussey.


'This really is an impressive book' Sebastian Faulks, Sunday Telegraph

A wonderful book, amazingly vivid... But also a truly original work of scholarship' Theodore Zeldin

Brisk, vivid and unexpectedly stirring... No one writes as evocatively and entertainingly about Paris as [Christiansen] does' Mail on Sunday

Every page is a pleasure, every building, every gas lamp brought shimmering to life... Don't board the Eurostar without a copy' The Times

'A sparkling yet scholarly new book' Country Life

Vivid, dramatic and tragic... If you are heading for Paris this summer be sure to put City of Light in your bag' Sunday Times

'[An] elegant and gorgeously illustrated new book' Sunday Telegraph

'A beautifully produced compact book, written and put together with the rare combination of expertise and love' Engineering and Technology Magazine

The photographs included in Christiansen's beautifully illustrated book [...] make all this vivid, as does his lively telling of the story... Christiansen's account is readable and engaging. He doesn't judge his subject' The Oldie.

'Christiansen's brisk and lively account contains excursions into the qualities of the Paris Opera House (not part of Haussmann's plan) and late nineteenth-century French political history, but remains both learned and amusing' Tablet.

A beautiful little book... A fascinating history of the time with many photographs and paintings' Four Shires Magazine

'It is attention to such detail that makes this witty, erudite historical essay on Paris's Haussmann years such an evocative read' The Spectator

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