A stunning piece of news this morning: The famous old American bookstore in Paris, Brentano’s, opened in 1895 and set on the prestigious Avenue de l’Opéra, closed its doors, a collateral damage linked to the recession. They couldn’t afford the steep increase of their lease and were put into liquidation. Their landlord was BNP Paribas bank. The store was a great place to buy books of course, but also crafts (patchwork) and Christmas ornaments. It was a landmark bookstore for foreigners as well as internationally-minded Parisians, as much as Shakespeare and Co., Galignani’s and WHSmith. I rather patronized the latter because of their huge stock (shame on me), but I will miss this relaxed place where the staff was very friendly.