Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Surround Yourself with Sound; How to Grow Some French Ears


Surround Yourself with French: Listening Suggestions

Bring the sound of French into your life, in as many ways as you can! Ideas, resources, and all our favorite audiobooks and podcasts, listed below. The audiobooks are available on Audible in French. The podcasts are clickable and free.

Le Club des Cinq, Enid Blyton (young sleuths solving mysteries out on their own in the 1950’s-60’s)
Le Petit Nicolas, Jean-Jacques Sempé, about the adventures at school and at home of the little Nicolas, who is mostly in trouble and often cannot figure out just why. Set in France of the 1950’s. Hilarious.
Les Misérables, Victor Hugo, especially if you want to get your money’s worth in French: it is a rather long 56 hours in length. And if you like detailed description.
Harry Potter is still a delight in French, and as you know the story, easy to follow.
And for adults:
Claudine à l’École, Colette, and all of the other Claudines; a Paris, etc. Colette was a giant of French literature and changed the way language is used in writing.
On la trouvait plutôt jolie, Michel Bussi, the south of France, Africa, the game and perils of immigration from one to the other, a real thriller.
Candide ou l’optimisme, Voltaire, in my series of classic literature
Et moi, je vis toujours, Jean d’Ormesson on history as an entity
Les oubliés du dimanche, Valérie Perrin, a charming tale of a young CNA, love, death, betrayal and loyalty beyond all barriers.
Le talisman, Janine Boissard, a story of friendship, becoming adults together, love and mystery.
Tous les hommes n’habitent pas la terre de la même façon, Jean-Paul Dubois, it is France meets Canada, the wilderness and the most extreme of closed-in spaces; a penitentiary.
John Grisham translated into French; it is easy to follow and always entertaining.
The beauty of Audible is that, like a podcast, you control the speed of narration. You can hike it up to twice the pace or slow it down to 0.5, with every increment in between now: 1.7, 0.6, 0.2).
Podcasts for families:
  • La Voie des Livres; stories for children
  • Le Podcast Curieux; Histoires pour les Enfants
  • Les Aventures de Rodolphe et Gala (free, but can be purchased by serie with no ads)
For adults: 
Christophe Hondelatte in Hondelatte Raconte, tells us all about courage, daring, and generosity when he is not recounting a murder story, all based on real-life accounts.
Boomerang, Augustin Trapenard; interviewing poets, artists, singers and actors in a show about culture and perspective.
Historiquement Votre, Stéphane Bern et Matthieu Noël, all sorts of anecdotes from history that weave together to tell us about three individuals linked by some sort of theme but not by time nor relation.
Le Coin du Crime, a Canadian podcast on, you guessed it, crime, mainly murders, from all around the world.
On vous souhaite une bonne écoute! Happy listening!

Thank you and photo credits.

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