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Entre Nous: A Woman's Guide to Finding Her Inner French Girl Paperback


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Frequently Bought Together

Entre Nous: A Woman's Guide to Finding Her Inner French Girl + All You Need to Be Impossibly French: A Witty Investigation into the Lives, Lusts, and Little Secrets of French Women + Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; First Edition edition (May 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312308779
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312308773
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (124 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #284,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Most American women would agree that those Frenchies have something going on. La Femme Nikita, Catherine Deneuve, even Audrey Tatou of Amélie fame-they all possess a certain je ne sais quoi. In this cutesy pick-me-up of a book, Ollivier-an American married to a Frenchman-insists that you, too, can be glamorous, mythic and mysterious; "a star in the pantheon of feminine beauty and strength." How can American gals tap into their inner Frenchness? Ollivier lays down the law, interspersing her must-dos with sidebars detailing, for example, legendary French ladies from Josephine Bonaparte to Coco Chanel. Among Ollivier's tips: for loungewear, think silk mou-mous or padded zebra-skin mules, not baggy sweat pants; toss the Equal and use regular sugar in your coffee; and go ahead and gossip, but be discreet. Stereotypical? Peut-être. But Ollivier's overall advice-seek beauty everywhere; accept character flaws; don't rush to define a romantic relationship-goes far beyond the realm of France and its women, and is evident in smart women the world over.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"A fun, interesting read with more to offer than fashion tips...(Ollivier) cracks the French style code."
- Palm Beach Post

"Ollivier dishes on that je ne sais quois that French women seem to have, and how American women can attain it."
- Dallas Morning News


"Ollivier dishes on that je ne sais quois that French women seem to have, and how American women can attain it." (Dallas Morning News)

"A fun, interesting read with more to offer than fashion tips…(Ollivier) cracks the French style code." (Palm Beach Post)

More About the Author

Debra Ollivier has written for Salon, Harpers, Playboy, Le Monde, and a variety of other publications. She's a California girl who married a Frenchman and lived in France, where her children were born, for a decade. She now lives in Los Angeles.

Customer Reviews

This book was really a fun read.
Sarah Luciani
I feel like this book is exactly what I've been missing from my life.
Bridget Lewis
This is the first book I have read cover to cover in ages!
Jennifer Hughes

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

139 of 146 people found the following review helpful By PonyExpress on May 10, 2004
Format: Hardcover
While there isn't anything too startingly *new* in this slim volume, I quite liked it, so I'm recommending it to all of you ladies who'd like some very light, frothy non-fiction for that three hour plane trip, or to curl up with just before bed. While a load of these sorts of books abounds right now, this author comes to her task honestly: she lived in France for 10 years, and from her likeable photo on the back cover, she's the kind of american everywoman whose point of view really might come in handy for those of us who wouldn't mind picking up a little french style. I thought her take on french women was admiring withOUT lapsing into the sort of "self-hating american" all-things-european adoration I've seen plenty of in various fashion magazines. Really a collection of ruminations on what it means to be french. And sociologists take note: her pages on the VERY different approach frenchwomen take to interpersonal relations(when meeting a new person/potential gal pal, general socializing, office demeanor, etc.)are from my limited experience absolutely on the money. In addition to the entertainment value, I'm going to try to adopt the described "french" qualities of self-restraint in gabbing, at least; I'm sure my success will be limited, but every little soupcon helps!
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176 of 191 people found the following review helpful By Carol H. on February 4, 2004
Format: Hardcover
My origin is half-French, I spend most of my day in France, travel very often to Paris and my best friends are French or Swiss French. At first I was shocked to discover how very French I actually turn out to be as described in the book, and how the traditions and values that I've been bequeathed are so very French too. But then the word "archetypal" is mentioned in the prologue and you'd better bear in mind all throughout your reading that this book is more about the ideal French woman and how to bring out the archetypal French woman in you rather than a description of what French women actually are like. Though many of my friends and acquaintances fit into the French girl description, I know scores of French women who are nosey, frumpy, tacky and very gauche. Especially if you've never been to France, don't be misled: this book is full of the typical prejudices and stereotypes about the French woman as seen through the gawking eyes of the American outsider. That is, the French woman as we would like to believe she is. There are also some mistakes, like ascribing Madame de Pompadour as Louis XIV's lover (she was Louis XV's)and the fact that many of the women reviewed (Anaïs Nin, Catherine de Medici, Marie Antoinette or Pauline de Rothschild) are not even French. Anyway, the book makes interesting beach reading. The prose is feisty, fast-paced and you'll find it hard to put down.
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290 of 320 people found the following review helpful By Sylvain on April 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
I am a French myself, I've noticed that there are a lot of books to teach people out there "how to be French", "how to eat like French", "why French are so great", for me, it is very strange. Of course France is a great place with all those history, food, museums, culture. But we also have a lot of bad things. So prasing French all the time is a bit non sense and it really makes us French more arrogant. (Yes, we are too arrogant and proud of ourselves). Even being a French myself, I have to admit it. We should learn to respect other culture and people. But all these books are making us feel like privilage. There is another book called" French women don't get fat". To be honest, we have a lot of fat people in Paris, a lot of women out there are not slim or as elegant as the books described. These books making the girls here feel like they are godness, which is bad. More and more people here are thinking they are the best. But the fact is, we have high unemployment rate, our streets, metros are so dirty, our people don't want to face the reality. We love to enjoy life too much, but we are too lazy to earn money to support ourselves and we are rejecting other culture. So wake up, we are all equal. Don't let our surface fool you.
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87 of 100 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Judith Frith on September 2, 2005
Format: Paperback
I found this book a disappointment. As a French speaker and a frequent visitor to France, I was eager to see another American's view on French style.

This author, however, describes a France that exists only in her imagination. "French girls" are naturally thin and never have a moment of self-doubt. Every meal they consume is a home-made rhapsody of fresh ingredients. When they get old, they live in a paradise of red lipstick, Chanel suits and poodles, surrounded by well-behaved grandchildren and enjoying daily chats with their neighborhood butcher and baker.

The last time I checked, every drugstore in Paris had huge posters pushing cellulite-shrinking creams to those thin, secure women. "Quick", the world's worst fast food chain (baked hamburgers!) has hundreds of outlets in France. And in 2003, the summer that this was book published, hundreds of elderly Frenchmen and women died alone in their apartments during a punishing heat wave. The government had trouble getting relatives to return from vacation long enough to collect the bodies.

Look, I like France and I have nothing against the French. But this lead-footed author - her "humor" reminds me of a high-school newspaper - writes about French women with a passionate crush, as if they can do no wrong. Her own country comes off like a loathed ex-husband. Americans, apparently are crude, fat, poorly dressed, and deservedly miserable. "How many breakfast cereals do Americans need to be happy?" she quotes a French visitor as saying.

I'm glad the other correspondents enjoyed this book, but I didn't. I usually pass on my books to a girlfriend or to charity, but this one I may just throw away.
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