The following list includes books that we have read and would recommend to anyone who wants a “dose” of Provence. Whether you have visited the region or always dreamed of doing so. This collection includes cookbooks, guidebooks, memoirs, love stories, mysteries and more.
Enjoy our Provencal Reading List!
Search by book type by clicking the headings below. From there, you will be directed to specific page listings by genre. On each page, the books are listed in alphabetical order (by author’s last name).
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Discover the biographies of people who lived in Provence including the artists inspired by the region. These authors have done extensive research on their subjects. If you enjoy reading biographies or historical fiction, then these titles will be of interest. Each book provides insight into life in the South of France. Discover the fascinating characters who chose to live in the region and their impact on Provence.
It’s easy to get a bit caught up in adult activities focusing on the cultural and historical aspects of Provence. However, there is plenty to interest children in the region. Many museums offer separate kid-friendly audioguides. These books are written for children and deliver a magical first glance at the South of France. Kids get a chance to learn about places, key characters, Roman history and Provencal customs.
Cookbooks and Culinary Guides
Fresh + Seasonal = Delicious
These culinary books are far from an exhaustive list, but rather a few of the ones in our personal collection. Some are cookbooks, some are culinary guides to the Provencal lifestyle and others are invaluable resources for navigating the tantalizing markets.
French Lifestyle Books
Without a doubt is definitely a “je ne sais quoi” style when it comes to French design, home decor and traditions. These books highlight personal approaches to the art of living and special table setting touches for entertaining.
Love Stories from Provence
A budding romance, a Provencal setting and voila – a love story. The following list of books only begins to scratch the surface of the popular women’s fiction genre. However, these are authors we recommend as they write beautifully, inviting you into the lifestyle in the South of France with their prose. These books may be fiction, but these authors have “done their homework” with regards to historical facts, understanding local traditions and immersing themselves in the culture.
Memoirs from Provence
These memoirs are inspired by those who have chosen to settle in Provence for a period. What is appealing about these books is that the authors have all visited more or less the same geography, yet each story is different. Some are humour-filled tales of expats trying to fit in, and others are reflections on the attraction of cultural differences.
Mystery Novels set in Provence
Provence may not spring to mind as a setting for a mystery, but these authors think so. If you enjoy a who done it, then this collection of murders, thefts, drug busts and generally bad actors is for you. Settings are Provencal vineyards, art galleries and even on the chic the French Riviera. Enjoy diving into the pages of these novels and attempting to solve the mysteries.
Travel Guides and Photo Books
Not only is Provence – Alpes – Côte d’Azur (PACA) a mouthful it is also immense geography and hard to tackle in a short vacation or even an extended stay. The following books are not guidebooks in the traditional sense, but rather a way to discover the best of the region based on these personal experiences.