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Tag Archives: france

A Parisian Adventure – Mark #3

Hi everyone,

If you don’t want to read a rather long and possibly waffling post about my recent trip to Paris, then you probably ought to navigate away from this post now… why not go check out my books? 😀 Sorry, couldn’t resist.

Okay, well you’ve been warned. Here goes… (you can click any of the images to enlarge them)

We had three full days in the city, with days either side travelling – I won’t bore you with those details, other than to say the Eurostar is a fantastic way to get from London to Paris super speedily!

Day 1

Notre Dame TowersThe Notre Dame Towers

This was first on the list because, although we’d been in the Notre Dame before, we hadn’t climbed the towers. It’s two separate charges, the sneaky so-and-sos. It was also an opportunity to see Paris from another vantage point, as the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe and Sacre Coeur had already been checked off the list.

It was a pretty epic queue, as you’d expect, but fortunately the weather was dry and we were loaded up with drinks and nibbles. It was also an opportunity to people watch, and we ended up getting into conversation with a couple of really nice American girls who were (I should say are, they’re still at it!) touring Europe. Their stories were pretty fascinating, too, and I gave them business cards so they can friend me on Facebook so I can see their photos from their onward travels. It also turned out that they love filthy books. So who knows, I might even make a couple of sales out of it!

After a spiral staircase climb that had me gasping for breath and wishing I’d remembered my inhaler, we got to the top. It’s pretty narrow up there, so you have to wait for people to move along to grab a vantage spot and stare at the gorgeous view. There are lots of fantastic gargoyles up there, and I got several photos of them, as well as the view they get to see all the time. It was lovely to spot my favourite place, the Sacre Coeur, up on the distant hill.

Another staircase later and we were at the very top of one of the towers, which I wasn’t expecting. You don’t have to go all the way up, but there was no way I was going to go halfway! The views are different again from here as you get a 360 view of Paris, including the rest of the building of the Notre Dame, which is an absolute work of art. Well worth the visit.

Padlock BridgeThe Padlock Bridge

This is actually called the Pont de l’Archeveche. The padlocks are engraved with the names of lovers and is a very romantic spot. I can’t seem to find a definite story behind how the whole thing started, but the idea is to put your name, your lover’s name, the date and possibly a message, then lock it onto the bridge and throw the keys in the river. There are thousands upon thousands of padlocks, and I actually noticed them creeping onto other bridges across the river, too, when I did the cruise. While we were there, we saw a couple who’d just married (they were still in their finery) put their padlock on the bridge to much applause. We added our padlock and went on our way. An interesting idea.

St Etienne du MontSt Etienne du Mont

We’d actually headed to this part of town (after sneaking in a visit to Shakespeare and Co bookshop) to see the Pantheon. It’s under a huge restoration project at the moment, but a giant sign proclaimed visitors were still welcome during the work. So we followed the arrows around to the back of the building, only to be told the place was closed. Sigh. Fortunately, the next place on our list, St Etienne du Mont was just behind the Pantheon, so we had a cheeky pint in the British pub next door, then headed in. It’s a very beautiful, underrated place and I’m very glad I saw it. Stunning architecture inside and out.

Day 2

The Catacombs

We headed here first as it was the place furthest out of the city that we wanted to see. We got there to an absolutely enormous queue. The weather was pretty crap, so we put on coats, put up our umbrella and settled in for a 2.5 hour wait. But I have to say, it was absolutely worth it. The Catacombs are inside some old quarry workings, and the bones have been transported from various cemeteries throughout Paris, most notably the Cemetary of the Innocents, which had to be closed down because it was full to bursting and having adverse effects on the health of those living close by. I didn’t take any photos down there because somehow it just felt wrong, disrespectful, somehow. The bones are artfully arranged and it’s bizarre to walk along and have millions of skulls staring at you. But somehow, it wasn’t creepy, and I haven’t had any nightmares… yet. Yes, the queue was long and boring, but if you want to see something truly unique, definitely check this place out. It’s also worth getting an audio guide, as the information is pretty sparse.

Les InvalidesLes Invalides

There are several different things within this complex. The building itself is gorgeous, then there are the various museums, the church, Napoleon’s tomb, and so on. In hindsight, as we ran out of time, I wish we’d gone to the WWII museum instead of the French war stuff because it interests me more, but it’s a huge place and we underestimated how long we’d be there. The church is stunning (enter from the courtyard – it’s separated from the part that houses Napoleon’s tomb), and the area around the other side with Napoleon’s tomb is awe-inspiring. Gorgeous, flamboyant architecture, and the man himself… well, you could probably fit an entire family inside that tomb, not just one small man! Definitely worth a visit, but allow yourself a good half a day, if not more. Depends on how much reading you want to do in the museums.

St Eustache

A massively underrated cathedral in the Les Halles district. Find it by locating the shopping centre (which is currently covered in cranes and stuff as they’re putting a roof over the whole thing or something!) and then walking around the centre until you find St Eustache. You can’t miss it. It’s almost as beautiful as the Notre Dame on the outside, though, because it’s free to get in, there’s probably no money for repairs, so the inside is rather unloved. Still, it’s a truly beautiful place, well worth making the trip for.

Day 3

Place des VosgesPlace des Vosges

We seriously screwed up trying to find this place and ended up wandering the Bastille area aimlessly. Still, we found a hotel with free WiFi, a street full of geeky shops which was awesome, and some cool motorbike shops. Once we found this place, we were glad we did. Despite the rain, it’s beautiful and an oasis of peace in a busy city. I think it’s the oldest square in Paris, with lots of mansion houses owned by rich folk 😉 We sheltered under the trees for a while, before heading off again. Worth a quick visit if you’re in the area.

View of the Notre DameRiver Cruise

There are several companies offering this, naturally, and we had tickets for Les Vedettes. This was an hour’s cruise from the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, along to Ile-St-Louis, around the other side of it, and back up the other side. We didn’t see anything we hadn’t already seen as this was our third trip to the capital, but we saw it from a different perspective. The sun had mercifully come out by this point, so everything looked different. A lovely way to rest your weary legs and feet and still see the gorgeous city.

Sacre CoeurSacre Coeur

A few of our plans had been scuppered, so we were left in Montmartre at a slightly loose end. And, as often always happens in that area, I was drawn to the Sacre Coeur. It is still my favourite place in Paris. There’s just something about it, I can’t put my finger on it, but it’s just so beautiful and inspiring (literally, I’ve written a book about it), and having headed up to the building, I was then drawn to climb to the top. It’s over 200 steps up, but the staircases are broken up by a walk across the roof (you feel like you shouldn’t be there), then a few more steps, twisting and turning until you’re in the dome. I was delighted on reaching the top that I wasn’t as out of breath as the previous two times I’d climbed up there. Dog ownership has obviously made me fitter. I took dozens of photos, as always, and was re-inspired. Handy, given I’m going to be writing rather a lot about it in my next novel. After a while, we headed back down to ground level and walked back down the staircases, meandering through people sitting on the steps and soaking up the views and the atmosphere. It’s a very light-hearted atmosphere, but the area is very crowded and notorious for pickpockets, so if you visit, keep your wits about you. It was a wonderful way to end a lovely few days.

Here’s hoping for New York next year 😉

Happy Reading,

Lucy x

Valentines BlisseKiss – A French Affair

vbkIt’s nearly Valentines Day – so you know what that means, don’t you? An extra special Sunday Snog – Valentines BlisseKiss! This is a week-long snogathon with smouldering kisses, fantastic stories and prizes to be won. I’m delighted to be taking part. So, in honour of this event, I’ve chosen one of my most romantic snogs, from A French Affair. Enjoy, and don’t forget to scroll down and check out the prize details.

“Yes, I’m positively quaking in my boots,” Sydney replied dryly. “But thanks anyway, I feel much better knowing you’re looking out for me.”

“I’m doing more than that,” he said quickly.

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. I’m wishing I could kiss you.”

“Oh…”

“Can I?”

“Now? Here?”

“Why not? It’s pretty romantic.”

“But people will see.”

“No one will care. This is Paris—they’re all smutty and sex-mad.”

“Really? In that case, that would be lovely.” She twisted her upper body to face him, leaning to meet him halfway. She kept her eyes open a little while, wanting to see his expression, but he quickly got so close he grew blurry, so she squeezed her lids shut. Opening her mouth slightly, a thrill ran through her as she felt his breath against her lips, then finally his mouth on hers. It was tentative at first—she remembered he was as out of practice as she was, even more so in fact—then he clearly grew more comfortable, more confident. His gentle movements grew more passionate, his lips taking hers as though he wanted nothing more in the world than to be kissing her. She certainly hoped that was the case, as it was the way she felt.

Eventually, the relatively chaste kissing was not enough. Harry slipped his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her harder onto him and plunged his tongue between her lips. She had to work hard not to let a moan escape—she was sure the people around them were getting enough of a show without her making noises like she was in a porno. Instead, she shifted her own hand to mirror his, tangling her fingers into the thick hair at the nape of his neck and tugging it slightly.

He reacted by kissing her harder, his tongue slipping sensuously against hers, doing a little dance and exploring every sensitive millimetre of her mouth and lips. She was in serious danger of melting into a puddle of lust and being soaked up into the Parisian soil beneath them. Determined to hold her own, she kissed with as much fervour as he, forcing his tongue back into his mouth with hers and returning the favour.

Soon, she became horribly aware that if they continued, they’d be likely to get carried away and end up being arrested for indecent exposure.


You can bag yourself a copy of A French Affair here.

Also, don’t forget to head back to Valentines Blissekiss and see what other luscious lip to lip action other authors have posted and enter to win more awesome prizes.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Sexy Saturday #12 – #MySexySaturday

My Sexy Saturday

Welcome back to My Sexy Saturday. This is where writers post either 7 words, 7 sentences or 7 paragraphs from their published work or work in progress, sticking to the week’s theme. This week’s theme is sexy settings. So I’ve selected a snippet from A French Affair – come on, much of it is set in Paris, I had lots to choose from! 😉

‘OK. We’ll see if there are any seats available at the pond.’

She didn’t know what he meant, but didn’t ask either. She figured she’d find out soon enough.

After a few minutes, as she’d expected, she discovered exactly what Harry had been talking about. For there, in front of them, was a large raised pond, surrounded by deckchairs. A pretty fountain sat in the middle, spurting water into the air. As it was such a beautiful day, predictably, many of the deckchairs were taken. But Lady Luck must have been shining down on them because a couple packed their bags up and left, and Sydney and Harry took their places immediately.

‘Phew,’ he said as he sunk into the seat, putting the carrier bag carefully on the ground, ‘that was lucky.’

‘It was. Anyone would think you had used the force to get them to move.’

Harry waggled his eyebrows. ‘Perhaps I did. You’ll never know. And if you try and tell anyone, I’ll use the force to stop you.’

She gave him a playful swipe on his arm, and he stuck his tongue out. Then, their silliness temporarily over, they sat back in their chairs and watched the world go by. The sun continued to beam down on them, people continued to feed the ducks and the pigeons in and around the pond, and the din of the surrounding city was muted, somehow, making it easy to forget it was there. Easy to think she was sitting beside a pond on a grand estate, right out in the countryside, at the end of a long drive and far away from everything.

You can buy A French Affair here.

Please use the list below to head on over to the other blogs participating in My Sexy Saturday, and don’t forget to leave us all comments, we love ’em!

Happy Reading,

Lucy x

Sunday Snog – A French Affair

Sunday Snog

In Too DeepIt’s time for another Sunday Snog. I’m recycling this one from a while back, but with good reason. A French Affair, which has been a standalone novella for some time, is also now available in the In Too Deep anthology. You can bag A French Affair plus two other erotic romance novellas for a bargain price. It’ll also be available in paperback format from January. Enjoy the snog!

“Yes, I’m positively quaking in my boots,” Sydney replied dryly. “But thanks anyway, I feel much better knowing you’re looking out for me.”

“I’m doing more than that,” he said quickly.

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. I’m wishing I could kiss you.”

“Oh…”

“Can I?”

“Now? Here?”

“Why not? It’s pretty romantic.”

“But people will see.”

“No one will care. This is Paris—they’re all smutty and sex-mad.”

“Really? In that case, that would be lovely.” She twisted her upper body to face him, leaning to meet him halfway. She kept her eyes open a little while, wanting to see his expression, but he quickly got so close he grew blurry, so she squeezed her lids shut. Opening her mouth slightly, a thrill ran through her as she felt his breath against her lips, then finally his mouth on hers. It was tentative at first—she remembered he was as out of practice as she was, even more so in fact—then he clearly grew more comfortable, more confident. His gentle movements grew more passionate, his lips taking hers as though he wanted nothing more in the world than to be kissing her. She certainly hoped that was the case, as it was the way she felt.

Eventually, the relatively chaste kissing was not enough. Harry slipped his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her harder onto him and plunged his tongue between her lips. She had to work hard not to let a moan escape—she was sure the people around them were getting enough of a show without her making noises like she was in a porno. Instead, she shifted her own hand to mirror his, tangling her fingers into the thick hair at the nape of his neck and tugging it slightly.

He reacted by kissing her harder, his tongue slipping sensuously against hers, doing a little dance and exploring every sensitive millimetre of her mouth and lips. She was in serious danger of melting into a puddle of lust and being soaked up into the Parisian soil beneath them. Determined to hold her own, she kissed with as much fervour as he, forcing his tongue back into his mouth with hers and returning the favour.

Soon, she became horribly aware that if they continued, they’d be likely to get carried away and end up being arrested for indecent exposure.


You can get your hands on In Too Deep here.

Also, don’t forget to head back to Blissekiss and see what other luscious lip to lip action other authors have posted. Yum!

My Sexy Saturday #4 – #MySexySaturday

My Sexy Saturday

Welcome back to My Sexy Saturday. This is where writers post either 7 words, 7 sentences or 7 paragraphs from their published work or work in progress, sticking to the week’s theme. The theme is characters falling in love. So here’s a snippet from A French Affairmy erotic romance novella.

By the time she finished, Harry had slipped from beneath her and switched on the bedside lamp. He tugged the covers from under their bodies and threw them over the top, covering her up, then gathering her to him and holding her tight.

“Listen to me, sweetheart. I can’t stop you thinking those things. I know I can’t, and it drives me crazy. But I guess I can understand why you’re thinking them. It’s different when a wife or a husband dies to when they separate or divorce. And I’ve always been up front with you about how I felt about Shelly. But you have to remember that when I removed my wedding ring, I also threw away the part of me that was clinging onto the past. She’s gone, she’ll always be gone. But equally, a part of her lives on in Marcus and Roxanne and in our hearts and memories.”

He paused.

“But, that’s nothing for you to worry about. I can’t wipe her out, I wouldn’t want to. But what I do want to do is spend the rest of my life with you. Create more memories together. Me and you. Hopefully one day, the kids too. As a family. Maybe even have a kid or two of our own. Sydney, I know it’s been a ridiculously short amount of time, but you’ve stolen my heart. Really made me want to move on, to be with someone else. To be happy. I don’t want to scare the shit out of you, but I think I’m falling for you. It’s been so long that I’ve almost forgotten what it feels like. But I’m pretty sure that’s what’s happening.”

A tear slipped from the corner of Sydney’s eye and rolled down the side of her face and into the pillow beneath her head. She wasn’t quite sure why she’d begun to cry, but she figured it was happiness, not sadness, that was inspiring such emotion in her. So she decided to let it be. Happiness was to be embraced, encouraged, and she hoped that she’d find a great deal more of it with Harry.

“I’m falling for you, too, Harry.”

“Well,” he said, holding her tighter and shifting so his lips were just millimetres from hers, “thank fuck for that.”

You can buy A French Affair here.

Please use the list below to head on over to the other blogs participating in My Sexy Saturday, and don’t forget to leave us all comments, we love ’em!

Happy Reading,

Lucy x

A French Affair is F*R*E*E on Amazon!

I just got the news that my erotic romance novella, A French Affair, is FREE on Amazon! I’m not sure how long it’s free for, so be sure to grab it quick.

Here’s the blurb:

Sydney Tyler is renting a barn conversion in Northern France, planning to spend the fortnight getting some words down on her novel. Unfortunately, construction work in the other half of the building puts an end to her peace and quiet. Genuinely upset that the builders are going to disturb her, the property’s handsome English owner, Harry Bay, offers to make it up to her. He’s a little flirtatious, and after spotting his wedding ring, Sydney keeps him at arm’s length. Sexy as he is, she has no intention of getting involved with a married man. But when Sydney learns the truth about Harry, will their mutual attraction spur them on to work through their emotional baggage and make this more than just a French affair?

Grab it here: Amazon UK | Amazon US

Hump Day Hook No. 17 #HDH

humpdayhookHi everyone and welcome to Hump Day Hook, which is basically where authors post a paragraph from a WIP or a published work to show it off to the world. This week, I’m sharing a snippet from my just released erotic romance novella, A French Affair. It follows on directly from last week’s, so you know what happened next 😉 Next week, I’ll be sharing something different.

The arrival of workmen was incredibly irritating. Her temporary landlord hadn’t mentioned there’d be anyone working next door. If he had, she wouldn’t have booked the place—the quiet and idyllic location were the whole reason for choosing this property, this area. Even though there was no way he could have known she was there to work, common courtesy would dictate that he told her. Perhaps he was just interested in taking her money and didn’t give a damn about whether she had a satisfactory stay or not. There was nothing to be done about it now, unfortunately. She’d paid for the fortnight, and she was buggered if she was going to cut and run, pissing that money down the drain. She’d just have to find a way around the disturbance, and console herself that she could leave a snarky write up on a review site when she got home.

Want more? Of course you do! Here’s the page  for A French Affair. And click here to go and visit the rest of the Hump Day Hook gang. Leave us comments about our pieces – we love it! 🙂

Happy Reading x

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