French Like Moi

A Midwesterner in Paris

Non-Fiction - Travel
256 Pages
Reviewed on 12/20/2019
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    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

French Like Moi: A Midwesterner in Paris is a work of non-fiction in the genre of travel writing, and was penned by author Scott Dominic Carpenter. In this interesting work of cross-cultural observation and enjoyable travelogue-style depictions, we focus in with our author on what the true essence of 'French-ness' really is. As a resident of Minnesota who moves to live in Paris, Carpenter takes us through eighteen tales of his most amusing faux pas and cultural standoffs as he tries to learn to blend into and assimilate with French culture, cuisine and the general everyday ways of living. What results is a charming and hilarious look at adjustment and figuring out life.

Pithy and bright at times, but also appropriately serious when it’s needed, the tales which author Scott Dominic Carpenter recalls in his excellent travel anthology run the full gamut of human emotions and those relatable situations that we all find ourselves in when we are immersed in a different culture. I particularly liked the narration style and Carpenter’s sense of humor, which brings out the cultural differences and his frequent failures to engage with them in a way that neither insults him nor his new cast of acquaintances. The laughs are in the misunderstandings and are not aimed at the people, which makes this a friendly and accessible work and a journey of discovery that is both accepting and enlightening as much as it is entertaining. Overall, French Like Moi is highly recommended as a well-written work on travel, culture, and life.