19 Best Books Set in France

Are you dreaming of traveling to France? These are the best books set in France that will transport you there!

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If you have been dreaming of France, but aren’t able to travel there right now, these are the best books set in France that will whisk you away and make you feel like you’re there.

France is one of my favorite countries and always has been. It’s where I went on my first international trip when I was five years old, and even being so young it left a vivid impression on me. I returned to France many times over the years, including living in Paris during college.

The books on this list are perfect for Francophiles and readers who are just dreaming of being transported to France through the pages of a book. I’ve included a mixture of fiction and nonfiction and various genres that will appeal to every reader.

I have included books on this list that are set in France, but not Paris. While I do love Paris, there are plenty of books set in other parts of France that are worth a read too!

If you’re looking for books specifically that take place in Paris, I have another post about the best books set in Paris.

Here are the best books set in France to add to your reading list.

azure coast france
medieval town Aveyron France

Grab these fantastic books set in France here:

Novels and Fiction Set in France

all the light we cannot see

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

This Pulitzer Prize-winning historical fiction novel is a poignant, emotional story set during France in World War II. It follows a young blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in Nazi-occupied France as they are both trying to survive the devastation of the war.

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the nightingale

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Another award-winning historical fiction novel set in France during World War II is The Nightingale. Following two sisters from a small French village, we watch their separate stories unfold, as each sister must embark on her own dangerous journey toward survival, love, and freedom amongst the devastation of war-torn, Nazi-occupied France.

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escape to the french farmhouse

Escape to the French Farmhouse by Jo Thomas

This fiction novel set in Provence follows a woman who moves to the South of France for a fresh start with her husband after years of infertility struggles. However, she soon ends up on her own, and finds herself on a journey to self-discovery and reclaiming her life.

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murder in the south of france

Murder in the South of France by Susan Kiernan-Lewis

If you’re looking for a fast-paced mystery set in France, look no further. This story is set on the French Riviera and follows a woman who must track down her sister’s killer.

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Chocolat by Joanne Harris

When a young single mother arrives in a small French village and opens a chocolate shop, she quickly begins to wreak havoc on the town in this whimsical, escapist novel.

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a riviera retreat

A Riviera Retreat by Jennifer Bohnet

This is a heart-warming and uplifting women’s fiction novel about four women who end up on a retreat together in Cote d’Azur. They’re all looking to escape their day-to-day lives for different reasons, and during the retreat, they end up making memories and forming a lifelong friendship.

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The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

If you are looking for a great classic novel set in France, The Count of Monte Cristo is a good one to pick up. As far as classics go, it is one of the more accessible and entertaining ones out there.

It follows a man who was wrongfully imprisoned for a crime he did not commit in a notorious French prison as he plots his clever escape and revenge against those who imprisoned him.

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the little vineyard in provence

The Little Vineyard in Provence by Ruth Kelly

This novel follows an American woman who is stuck in a dead-end job with an absent husband when she receives some shocking news. Her grandfather has left her his entire estate in Provence. Suddenly, she has the opportunity to take a chance on creating a life she loves.

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my grape year

My Grape Year by Laura Bradbury

This fictional novel follows a teenage girl who ends up leaving her home in Canada and going to Burgundy, France on a last-minute school exchange for a year.

Thrust into a culture she knows hardly anything about and only speaking a few words of French, she quickly has to adapt as she faces new experiences, challenges, and opportunities in France.

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the cleaner of chartres

The Cleaner of Chartres by Salley Vickers

This novel follows a quiet, mysterious woman in the small French town of Chartres. She can usually be found cleaning the town’s famed medieval cathedral or doing odd jobs for the townspeople, until one day something happens that forces her to confront her secretive past.

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bruno chief of police

Bruno, Chief of Police by Martin Walker

Bruno is the chief of police in a small, quiet town in the South of France. In this mystery novel, he must work with a young policewoman from Paris after a crime rocks this quiet town.

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Non-Fiction Books About France

A Year in Provence

A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle

This memoir follows a British ex-pat as he moves to Provence with his wife and two dogs. Their plan is to renovate and live in an old stone farmhouse.

Along the way, he discovers the pleasures of regional cuisine and Provencial culture in small-town France.

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My Life in France

My Life in France by Julia Child

This is another must-read memoir about living in France. American Julia Child initially moved to France in 1948 because of her husband’s job, but she quickly fell in love with the country and its cuisine in particular.

Her memoir recounts her journey to becoming one of the world’s most beloved cooking teachers and cookbook authors and is a love letter to France.

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bringing up bebe

Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman

When an American journalist living in France has a baby there, she quickly finds herself immersed in the world of French parenting.

This is a humorous and interesting book that examines French culture through the differences between French and American parenting.

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my good life in france

My Good Life in France by Janine Marsh

Janine left England to go pick up some cheap wine in Northern France. She returned home a few hours later having put in an offer for an old, rundown barn in Calais.

This memoir follows her and her husband as they move to rural France in search of “the good life” while renovating their new old home, and all the unexpected things that happen along the way.

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Dirt by Bill Buford

In this captivating food memoir, Bill Buford tells to story of moving to Lyon with his family to study to become a chef. What is supposed to be a six-month stay in a foreign city turns into five years as Bill falls in love with the gastronomy and culture of France.

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me talk pretty one day

Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

Fans of humorous memoirs will enjoy this laugh-out-loud funny book. While the first half follows the author’s childhood in the United States, the second half covers his life after moving to Northern France with witty observations about French life, culture, and language learning.

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my french platter

My French Platter by Annemarie Rawson

This is another memoir about living in France written by Annemarie, a woman from New Zealand who moves to France with her husband in search of a new life adventure.

Their plan is to renovate a 15th-century farmhouse, but they get more than they bargained for. Can they salvage their dreams of living abroad or will they need to rethink their future?

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Young Adult Books Set in France

anna and the french kiss

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

When Anna is sent to boarding school in France, she isn’t happy about it. But then she meets Etienne and suddenly everything seems better!

This book has quickly become a classic young adult romance that’s popular with teens and adults alike.

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grave mercy

Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

Set in medieval France, this young adult novel blends historical fiction and fantasy in a story full of political intrigue, romance, and a convent full of assassin nuns.

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Best Books Set in France

These are some of the best books set in France.

Have you read any of these books set in France? Do you have any favorite books set in France that I should add to this list? Let me know in the comments below!

Related: 25 Captivating Books Set in Paris

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The Best Books Set in France
Best Books set in France pin

Where next?

Start with this list of the very best travel adventure books. It includes great reads that will fuel your wanderlust and have you staying up late to finish them.

You should also check out the following series of book lists set in specific destinations:

Ireland | Scotland | Australia | Spain | New Orleans | Alaska | Japan

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