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on 26 March 1999
I read Suzy's earlier book and with morbid curiousity looked at this book to see if she has made any improvements. I guess Suzy is still lounging on the bed in her hotel because the research is still as bad. So.....here's a post of my previous review which is still entirely applicable.
I spend several months each year in Paris. A wonderful city that is beautiful, safe and above all...French. Something which Suzy seems unable to comprehend.
She seems to know little of the city. Street names are mispelled. Suggestions for lunch are directed to overpriced mediocre tourist traps. Stores are noted at addresses that are years out of date. She suggests getting your hair done at the head office of L'Oreal. Suzy???? This is an office building without a salon in sight. Do you take your car for service to the head office of General Motors? She sends to you to a well known Parisian leather shop that has not been at the address offered for years. She tells you to arrive a couple of hours before opening at the St. Ouen Market. She even offers a cute way of pronouncing the name. Thanks so much Suzy. However, arrive a couple of hours early at the market and all you'll get is nasty remarks from vendors who are setting up and trying to enjoy their first cafe of the day.
She offers all the standard silly warnings about subways, pickpockets, "rowdy boys" and dangerous French traffic. The subways are clean, always populated, remarkably convenient and I suppose there are a few pickpockets lurking somewhere; but this is the method of transportation in Paris and I have never encountered one bad incident. I don't know what Suzy means by "rowdy boy". I have never seen one.....nor heard of problems with them. I wonder if Suzy gets out much? Regarding traffic, it's like any big city and appropriate precautions are needed. Things like looking both ways when crossing the street are probably in order. Suzy, I suppose you live in some protected suburb of middle America and are unused to seeing more than a few cars at a time.
Suzy has problems with ATMs and seems to think that the purchase of your Carte Orange is a difficult task that can only be accomplished at one ot two subway stations. As usual, Suzy's problems are remarkably unique.
And most offensive is Suzy's obvious lack of knowledge regarding French manners and society. If you don't like differences Suzy, stay at home and go the mall where you can feel very comfortable at your Wal-Mart.
Suzy says she spends hours relaxing on her bed and in her tub at the Hotel de Crillon. Suzy might I suggest that you spend less time in the tub and a little more time researching your book.
Suzy and Frommer's should be embarassed that they actually published this book. Shame to all involved.
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on 27 November 2002
Suzy represents the worst sort of shopper; not concerned particularily with style or quality, her focus on labels is disgusting. Her books rarely change from one edition to the next and are full of errors. She misses out on the joy of shopping, the aspect of wandering and discovering. And I for one am glad she does as it keeps people like her away from the real jewels. When I lived in New York there were several wonderful boutiques in my neighbourhood that thankfully she never managed to discover despite recomending other stores on the same block. I find myself agreeing with the other reviews here in believing that she does here research via the Yellow Pages.
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on 8 July 1999
MS. GERSHMAN'S BOOK IS AMUSING AT BEST, BUT MOST TOPICS ARE COPIED WORD FOR WORD FROM THE LAST EDITION. ALSO HER ADVICE IS SOLELY BASED ON HER OPINIONS AND NOT GEARED TO EVERYONE. FOR EXAMPLE, SHE ONLY LISTS HOTELS WHICH ARE-AT LEAST FOR THE AVERAGE PERSON-SO EXPENSIVE. STAYING AT THE HOTEL DE CRILLON OR THE WESTIN DEMEURE HOTELS FOR AT LEAST $200/NIGHT IS NOT WHAT THE AVERAGE PERSON CAN AFFORD. TRUE THIS IS A BOOK ABOUT SHOPPING, BUT AS LONG AS SHE'S INCLUDING A SECTION ABOUT HOTELS SHE SHOULD AT LEAST GIVE A BROAD RANGE OF ACCOMODATIONS AT WHICH TO STAY.
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on 30 May 2001
Why does Suzie recommend such expensive hotels when the less you spend on accomodation the more you have for shopping and buying lots of goodies. If you're just going to shop you probably won't be spending much time in the hotels anyway.
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on 26 February 1999
The undisputed shopper's Bible, this is also a must-have for anyone who just wants a real feel for the many different faces of Paris. Some of my favorite sections are Gershman's capsule reviews of different neighborhoods, complete with nearest metro stop and where to stop for coffee or tea -- the latter is just as essential after a day of sightseeing and museum-going as for a post-shopping break. Although Gershman clearly loves the luxury and designer shops, she also has a real appreciation for dime stores, food shops, and just fun neighborhoods to see the "real" Paris, whether your preference is young-and-trendy, BCBG (French yuppie) or classic Parisian. And whether you want to do a year's worth of clothes shopping or just pick up the perfect gift for the folks back home (at any price range), Gershman will guide you not only to the perfect shop, but the right gift. It's like having a knowledgeable yet fun-loving personal shopper, immersed in France, but with an American spirit. She also has great hotel recommendations. Whether this is your first trip to Paris or your 50th, Born to Shop deserves a place right next to your passport. (Note: don't be put off by the 1997 publication date. Although some stores will inevitably have closed or moved, the essentials are still good.)
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on 21 May 1998
I am a travel agent I usually buy a copy for my clients.
You are always on Target !!!!
You really take a lot of the extra chasing around out for us. Leaving a little extra time for sightseeing
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