Paris in Winter An Illustrated Memoir
powerHouse Books (November 20, 2015). Hard cover, 272 pages, $24.95.
Paris in Winter is a lively mix of illustrations and stories about the artist's family’s annual winter visits to Paris. This memoir of poetic, lighthearted vignettes highlights the family’s passion for art and food, fashion and social life. Also nimbly woven into the book are fascinating bits of the city's history and artistic lore. Coggins's ink and watercolor drawings capture classic Paris scenes as well as family and friends against the backdrop of the elegant city in winter.
“Paris in Winter is an alluring delight to the eye, ear, mind, and palate. David Coggins, who clearly knows Paris inside-out, celebrates the world’s most beautiful city in all her beguiling facets. He wears his culture and his sophistication lightly – but you will learn a lot along the way.”
William Boyd, Author of Solo and Sweet Caress
“David Coggins's utterly beguiling book is not only a love poem to Paris but to his wife and children as together they visit and revisit the city of lights and shadows over a series of thirteen returning years. Paris in Winter is an essential meditation for our fraught times, a primer on the absolute value of pleasure, the passion of and for art, the avidity of taste and perception. This is a book to read, of course, but also to see. To say it is charming is only to emphasize its seriousness.”
Patricia Hampl, author of The Florist’s Daughter and Blue Arabesque
“David Coggins, a writer and illustrator of great soul and sensitivity, has created that loveliest and rarest of works: an illustrated, beautifully-written and observed memoir that will inspire anyone who reads it to think about his life and how he wants to live it. This is a book that is like the best afternoon you’ve ever passed in a Paris café with your best friend on a cold January afternoon: light-filled, comforting, enchanting and entertaining, and filled with beauty.”
Michael Hainey, author of After Visiting Friends
“Scarves, wrapped and tied like sailors’ knots, are not removed even in front of espresso.”
“Once royals and courtiers in satin shoes strolled arm in arm through the gardens. Now citizens of the world
cling to the arms of green chairs, prop up tennis shoes and muddy boots, and watch ducks paddle about
and children push sailboats.”
“On the way to Entomologie, we pass an elephant, a tiger, a giraffe, and a zebra all standing about as if at a cocktail party. A stunning menagerie of birds stares at us from their perches without blinking.”
“There are shrieks from soccer games, murmuring in the allées, laughter across the boules lanes.
It is a world of leisure, at play as if May.”
“Red, especially dark red, is a color I associate with Paris. It’s the color wine, of rare beef, of radishes,
of lips and nails, of love.”
“Who is bundled more against the cold: women on the streets of Saint Germain-des-Prés or their dogs? Roles are reversed. Les dames wear fur; les chiens wear clothes.”
“There seems to be more style in winter. There is more to wear: fedoras, sleek coats, sexy sweaters, beautiful leather boots, the scarves. Endless layering of wool, silk, denim.”
“In Ladurée a polite young woman slips her hand into a surgeon’s glove, takes colorful macarons from the rows on display, and nestles them one by one into a tissue-lined box. ‘So Franche,’ Wendy says.”