A Haven for Readers

I grew up in a family of readers and now I’ve generated another generation of book lovers.  Given the price of English language books in Paris, the American Library, a subscription library tucked into a side street in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, has been a godsend.

A subscription library?  Yes, the American Library is private and to cover its expenses, one must pay a yearly fee —  155 euros for families, 100 euros for individuals,  and 75 euros for students and seniors.  (There are also short-term — four or six month — memberships if your time in Paris is limited.) But trust me, it’s been worth every centime.  The collection is extensive (120,000 books and subscriptions to over 400 periodicals) so good luck running out of things to read.  An unadvertised gem is the incredible travel section; our family has taken several dozen trips within Europe during our sojourn here and we have yet to buy a single guide book thanks to the library.  Whatever our destination, there’s always a guide from Eyewitness, Lonely Planet, Michelin, or other sources that I can check out.

The library, which currently serves 2,300 members from 60 countries, also offers movies  and other audiovisual materials, reference and research resources in paper and in electronic form including JSTOR & EBSCO databases.  In addition, there are regular literary and public-affairs programs and book groups for adults, as well as children’s and teen events and activities.

The library is open Tuesday to Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Sundays, from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. September through June. Reduced summer hours apply during the months of July and August.

The American Library in Paris
10, rue du Général Camou
75007 Paris
Phone: 01 53 59 12 60


3 responses to “A Haven for Readers

  1. I do use our local libraries, but more often than not, other than books I can find almost anything I’m looking for on the internet. I used to work in the Main Library of Fort Lauderdale.

  2. For anyone interested in a subscription library which specialises in the subject of visual arts, the bibliotheque Forney in the 4th of Paris, near Saint-Paul metro is a gem. With books in English and French. The subscription per year is EU20 and gives you access to all the other Paris libraries.

    Bring a passport size photo and a proof of address to gain access.

    Wheile you are there, call into the Greenlane Gallery on 29 rue des deux ponts, ile saint Louis and say hi. I’m there most of the time.

  3. Pingback: History Comes Alive « Posted in Paris

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