payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans online
Payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
Payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
Payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans online
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
payday loans
binary options news august 14 2014
what are the disadvantages of binary options
binary options signals auto signals
binary options leads
tag archives binary option no deposit required
sportsmavins binary trading page 13
mt4 indicators binary options stock
one touch trading binary options tutorial one touch option
binary options trading strategy youtube review guide
onetwotrade binary choices trading the next big issue
the binary options broker releases education pack on trading
dual binary option definiti
binary options multiplier reviews
find best binary options signals
binary options trade types
anyoption binary options revi
trading insanity course by guy edrington for binary options
hero binary option system
binary options traders in 2014
binary options trading scams and frauds
hedging spot forex binary options review trading investopedia
profitable binary options indicator
binary options trading software amazing download get discount now
best binary option payout banc de broker
buy doesanyonereallymakemoneytradingbinaryoptionsfreedownloadvideopdfebook shopping
secret method binary options read first
trade binary options with confidence
option prime binary broker
binary options daily market review 13092014 us opening
binary options with crown option
download binary options membership site
binary option trading training review free bonus
strategies for binary option brokers
a closer look on binary options scam
binary option robot for mac free download
can you really make money binary trading
binary options virtual account
binary option trading payp
is there really a magic key to unlock consistent binary options profits
trackelite v10 binary options trading indicator
bloombexoptions binary option platform review
binary option advice review trading live
following trick intended for binary options trading
91 success rate with binary options
when and what to trade in binary options
binary options free signup bonus
binary options brokers accepting instadebit deposit
binary options pro signals torrent
binary option indicator tradeelite v1 0 free mp3 download
making money from binary options
how to win in binary options news
how to win at binary options trading 1 coupon code
binary options trading signals live with signals live
live signals for binary optionsmp4
how to win in binary options u
sharp movement binary option trading strategy
tag archives trading binary options abe cofnas download
forex binary options trading in uk through banc de
trading system omni11 binary options 1 screenshots of system omni11 1
best binary option trading platforms
binary options live signals signals forum trading signals live
binary options broker promotions
binary options trading system free signals
what is binary option trading system
binary option quotes
review binary options brokers 100 minimum deposit industrial size
in binary language each letter of the alphabet each number and each special character is made up of
hot forex binary options review signals service free
top ten questions to ask binary options broker
binary options trading system striker 9 pro
is binary options a good way to make money
binary options review how to win with
free binary options trading system
binary options money management calculat
keith jones forex binary options system software download
testing new highlow binary options strategy
some advice when dealing with binary options brokers
beginners binary options strategy video tutorial 2014
posts tagged binary options tips
forex binary options risk warning disclaimer
binary options brokers the good ones
brand new binary options investing service requires bitcoinonly obligations
what exactly is a good binary options strategy
binary option market predict
top us binary options broke
how to make a living trading binary optio
importance of binary option broker
binary options live signals facebook review option extreme
binary option system free trial
how to get access to successful strategies in binary options trading
binary options trading game review experience
binary options trading signals ep 7
put call binary option
trade binary options with one two
binary option wikipedia the free encyclopedia
binary options end of day signals review best platform 2014
binary trading demokonto review auto signals pro signals
remarkable trading binary options for you
good binary options brokers review option live signals
binary options asia launches trading platform targeting asian traders
binary brokers australia review option trading united states
the best brokers for usbased binary options traders
binary options caricature us jobless numbers beat greek debt
interactive brokers trade binary options directly on mt4
good price free binary trading robot inexpensive sale
important facts about binary options trading scams
psychological aspects of binary trading
binary option top broker
get binary options magnet the worlds first bot
binary options minimum deposit list

Paris’ Little Red Wheelbarrow

red-wheelbarrow-parisInterview by Richard Nahem, Eye Prefer Paris Correspondent

In this day and age of book superstores like Barnes & Noble and electronic reading devices like Amazon Kindle, it’s a relief to know that Paris is still alive with many individually owned bookshops that sell only books and that don’t smell of Starbucks coffee or sell Godiva chocolates. The Red Wheelbarrow in the Marais is a delightful English language bookstore, and its owner, Penelope Fletcher reflects on that in this interview with Richard Nahem.

Where were you born and where did you grow up?

I was born on the west coast of Canada, and grew up on Hornby Island, which is in the Salish Sea in British Columbia.

When did you move to Paris and why?

I moved to Paris in 1990- after I heard about a Canadian bookshop opening here, – and I had a British passport so I thought why not -and moved here with a one way ticket. I did not get a job at the Canadian bookshop- but got a job shortly after I arrived at Brentano’s.

What made you open your bookshop and how long ago did it open?

I opened a bookshop on  the west coast when I was 19, which I ran for three years and continued to work in all sorts of bookshops in Vancouver and then in Montreal.  I arrived in Paris at age 26- I thought about opening a bookshop here, after I had worked at Brentano’s for a year, and had briefly worked at WH Smith- I became an English teacher,  after ten years of teaching I wanted to go back to bookselling – so I decided to open my own bookshop. I took classes with the Chambre de Commerce here, and they put me in touch with an organisation called Paris Initiative Entreprises, who gave me an interest free loan which helped me get a bank loan – I bought the store lease of a retiring French bookseller on rue Charles V, and The Red Wheelbarrow bookstore opened on September 1, 2001.

What are some of your best selling books now? Do you tend to sell more fiction or non-fiction?

Our best selling books at the moment are the Steig Larson books – especially the last one, since it is not yet out in paperback in North America, – we always sell a lot of Madame de Sevigné’s letters since we are in the Marais – Jonathan Franzen’s new novel ‘Freedom”, Hilary Mantel “Wolf Hall”, Kingsolver “The Lacuna” , Paul Auster “The Invisible” ….We sell more fiction than non fiction I would say.

Who are your clientele?

We have a wonderful mix of customers, we have a lot of people visiting Paris- from all over the world, we have students at the different universities (French and American in Paris), we have a lot of people who come regularly to Paris who own or rent apartments here. We have a lot of Parisians of all backgrounds and nationalities who live on the right bank who come regularly to buy books in English. Contrary to what most people think, the majority of our customers are not Americans or English people who read books in English, but are very often Swedish, Brazilian, or Finnish- or I could say South American or Nordic, – a lot of people come in from Italy and Russia as well. And of course, an increasing number of French people like to read in English. And heaps of Australians, Irish, and families whose children need  books.

Penelope-Fletcher-ParisHow are you coping with e-books and electronic reading devices such as the Kindle and how do you see the future of small bookstores like yours?

Kindle makes bookselling boring. I think we are going to see all the big publishers go out of business when books become digitally copied for free, which will be in the next six months to two years. In five years from now, the small publishers will become the big publishers and we will start all over again.  People love books, people like reminders that they exist as individuals and thinking ones at that. Small bookshops like mine, have to ride the wave, but we need to be supported by the population at the same time. We are the same as the wine sellers, the cheese sellers and the universities -we represent the real. Internet, is ephemeral, not real. It doesn’t satisfy the self. A digital book does not exist for ever.You can read it on line and then it is gone, or stored away somewhere that requires electricity – you cant pick it up late at night and read your favorite part to a friend or to yourself.  My big worry with kindle and e-readers are that books are going to disappear at a faster rate- print runs of paper books are already smaller and short lived, and the out of print date used to be at two years is now shorter.

What are some of your personal favorite books right now?

I will always love George Eliot and Virginia Woolf, I enjoyed Helen Dunmore’s book The Betrayal, which is on the Booker Longlist,  – in the long run, I have way more personal favorite books then I do ‘right now’ (I am reading my way through the Booker Longlist so I am excused). I always recommend Rohinton Mistry’s Fine Balance, and Vikram Seth’s The Suitable Boy.

Can you tell us what are the most popular books about Paris and what are some of the ones you recommend for someone visiting?

The most sold book in English in Paris is A Moveable Feast – I recommend Gertrude Stein though for either Autobiography of Alice B Toklas, or her Paris, France book. The book I recommend the most, at the moment, is Sarah’s Key – by Tatiana de Rosnay, a novel which takes place in Paris in 1942, and 2002- and treats the subject of the round up of the children and their families -the  Vel d’hiv – and the memory of this today here in France. I always say it is Le Divorce meets Suite Français, but it is not quite.  Cara Black is extremely and increasingly popular – as is Fred Vargas – and the Victor Legris Mysteries series written by the two sisters who write under the name Claude Izner –  everything about the periods of Louis XIV and Madame de Pompadour time, Madame de Sevigné’s letters – is popular and of course the French Revolution and the second world war in France-  also Mavis Gallant short stories sell well

What writer living or dead would you most like to have dinner with?

I tend to be terribly stupid around people I admire- so I would be horrified to have dinner with Henry James, or Virginia Woolf, or Shakespeare- unless of course I could be one at a large table of people and stay at one end quietly listening in, and keeping my loud mouth shut. So I would like to have dinner perhaps with Paul Schmidtberger because he is as funny in real life as he is in his books.

What do you prefer about Paris?

The sunlight on the buildings, the river Seine, the walk between the left bank and the right bank over the Ile Saint Louis.

The Red Wheelbarrow
22 rue St. Paul, 4th arr.
Metro: St. Paul

Spread the love...Share on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on TumblrEmail this to someonePrint this page

4 Responses to “Paris’ Little Red Wheelbarrow”

  1. Tom Byrne says:

    I’ve often been into your book shop and have a stack of books from there. It’s great to be able to find books which are well written and interesting.

    The ambiance in your shop is wonderful and the staff that I’ve met are well informed and friendly.

    You’re definately not just shifting boxs. It’s a quality bookshop for all ages.

    T J

  2. nichole says:

    Lovely interview! The apartment we lived in last year is right to the left of The Red Wheelbarrow. Everyone is so nice, and they helped us pick out some great books for the boys.

  3. Lindsey says:

    Great interview! I love knowing about the people behind some of the most beloved shops in the city.

  4. Danielle says:

    I’ve known Penelope since she opened the Red Wheelbarrow and she is a lovely person. Her shop is cozy and you can spend all day browsing the tables, the shelves and just talking to the staff while they ring up customers.

    I think more people need to know how fantastic Red Wheelbarrow and Penelope are and to go visit as soon as they land in Paris.

Post Your Review