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Kiratiana's Travel Guide to Black Paris: Get Lost and Get Found Perfect Paperback – May 3, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

...this guidebook goes beyond what you ll find in mainstream guides like Frommer s and Fodor s.Freelon walks with you along side streets in arrondisements you aren t likely to see featured on Rick Steves Europe, tells you about black Francophone festivals, and introduces you to hip house, funk and African and Caribbean clubs you wouldn t know about unless a local showed you. --Today's Chicago Woman Travel Connection

About the Author

Kiratiana Freelon is a Harvard Graduate who has traveled to more than 25 countries and appeared on the Travel Channel as an expert on Paris. The Chicago native's passion for travel, sport and culture led her to work on Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. She is now launching a series of "Black&" destination travel guides and hopes to inspire people to "lose" themselves in travel.
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Product Details

  • Perfect Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Eunique Publishing; 1st Edition edition (May 3, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982154704
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982154700
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,690,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Perfect Paperback Verified Purchase
When I began reading the guide, I wasn't sure what to expect: A typical travel guide, but targeted towards black readers? Or a guide to black communities in Paris? Kiratiana tackles both. The book covers standard information about Parisian hotels, restaurants, and museums along with tips to aid the adventurous but inexperienced African American traveler. The main focus, however, is helping readers get a taste of "Black Paris," the cultural contributions of peoples of black African descent.

This is where I feel that the guide is a bit weak. Too often "black" becomes African American, and the guide is reduced to a list of who slept or performed where. Although there are some wonderful sections on African and Caribbean history and food, I didn't get a sense of what homebred black Parisian culture really is all about. In addition, it's difficult to have faith in a few reviews about places she's never been to. In her attempt to be thorough, Kiratiana becomes a secondary source that might not be all that reliable. Points for originality though. Kiratiana is a true entrepreneur, having the sense and wherewithal to meet the growing demand of black women for travel resources. I'm looking forward to using her guide to Paris and reading the others as they come out.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
I've never written a book review before, and I doubt mine will hardly do this book justice... I've been considering Paris for quite some time now, so much so that I began learning the French language in preparation for my journey and doing a little research, I didn't find much thought beyond the typical touristy attractions. I want to see the "real deal" Paris, beyond the Eiffel Tower and Champs-Elysees. So I was beyond ecstatic when I heard about this book. This book is rich with Paris Black History, and goes far beyond your typical lodging and dining guides. There's an entire chapter dedicated to "Before You Go", this chapter alone makes the entire book worth purchasing! The author gives you important dates, websites, movies, books, and even television and radio stations. You know all those things that you know you should ask/research but will most likely forget until you get to Paris? Well the answers are in the book! As soon as more books are available I'd like to order one to send to my best friend we're taking on Black Paris together. More photos would have earned the book 5 stars. Au revoir
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Format: Perfect Paperback
Picking up this book is like taking a trip down the back streets and side alleyways of Paris beyond the movies. For those of us who have always dreamed of going to "La Ville-Lumière", Freelon illuminates it further by offering a fresh, candid perspective on the history, culture, music, food, and favorite haunts of the city's ever-vibrant, ever-visible, and ever-growing black (and brown) residents. A must-read for anybody looking to experience Paris beyond the Champs Elysées. Loved it.
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I plan on getting lost and found with "Kiratiana's Travel Guide to Black Paris" this fall. It will be my first trip to Paris, and this book is almost as essential as my passport!

Kiratiana goes beyond the travel basics and includes great historical and cultural context for the trip. From recommended pre-trip reading and films to what a traveler should expect to see on-site in the black French neighborhoods (KFC/Beauty Supply Store, anyone?), the author prepares you for the myriad experiences that Paris has to offer.

I don't read travel guides cover-to-cover; however, this guide does lend itself to a deeper reading with its historical inserts on subjects such as Negritude, Saartjie Baartman, Slavery Remembrance Day and the Jazz Age. I find myself flipping to random pages and sections, only to get lost in the Paris of Langston Hughes, Chester Himes, James Baldwin, Josephine Baker and Bricktop. Kiratiana gives us the key to the City of Light - places to find affordable lodging, splendid dining, unique cultural experiences and always adds her personal touch, recounting her own experiences in first-person voice (I won't forget how she was rebuffed at two hip-and-happening nightclubs in one evening!).

The book reads like a friend recounting her travels with you, making her recommendations and giving you great tips for your own journey through Black Paris.
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I've been a fan of Kiratiana's blogs for years, and her book is an extension of all the great observations and writing she has already done.
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