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Mon Cher Papa: Franklin and the Ladies of Paris (rev. ed.)

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 404 pages
  • Publisher: Yale Univ. Press (October 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 075679739X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0756797393
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,274,234 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A charming and slightly fluffy analysis of Franklin's social life in Paris. Each chapter is devoted to a different woman or family that befriended Franklin, and dissects the nature of the relationship by looking at excerpts from their letters back and forth. Many of these ladies are interesting figures in and of themselves, and anyone with an interest in the role of women during the late 18th century will find much to amuse them here.

That said, the analysis of each friendship is brief. This is a casual biography - enough to whet the interest of the reader and to act as a jumping off point for further research. At the time Lopez was writing, many of the figures she discusses had not been adequately researched, but hopefully more work has been done on them by now.

Lopez is undoubtedly pro-Franklin, but not to the point of ignoring his flaws, and she does include a few hostile observations by John Adams, who did not care for the man at all. She also does a good job of sticking to concrete sources for her information and not flying off into guesswork. There is usually a letter or diary behind every one of her conclusions.

Little peaks of the coming French Revolution find their way into the letters quoted. There is a real sense of a country tipping toward disaster, some of its citizens wary and some oblivious. Lopez invokes the atmosphere of the time with considerable skill.

Overall, an entertaining light biography of one very important sliver of Franklin's life.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is amazing. I not only cracked up by the anecdotes, It finally put all the historic figures of that time in their places and made me comprehend how it all happened with Franklin and the US independance from England. Beautiful descriptions of the era.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Claude-Anne Lopez has given us a delightful and careful examination of a man too often classed as "quaint" and "lecherous". With subtle strokes, the portrait of Franklin the man-complex, the dreamer who builds, the lover who waits - emerges complete with vanity, pride, anxiousness, humility, generosity and fervor all intact.
Ms. Lopez's works (she has written many) are as important to understanding Dr. Franklin as is his own (as we call it) "Autobiography".
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