The stories range from the nineteenth century to the present day and include tales by well-known writers such as Colette, Maupassant, Didier Daeninckx, and Simenon, and less familiar names such as Francis Carco, Aurelie Filipetti, and Arnaud Baignot. They present a vivid picture of Paris streets in a variety of literary styles and tones. Simenon's Maigret is called upon to solve a mystery on the Boulevard Beaumarchais; a flaneur learns some French history through second-hand objects retrieved from the Seine; a nineteenth-century affair in the Rue de Miromesnil goes badly wrong; a body is discovered on the steps of the smallest street in Paris. Through these stories we see how the city has changed over the last two centuries and what has survived. All of the tales in the book are translated apart from the last, a new story by David Constantine, based on the last days of the poet Gerard de Nerval.
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