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Classic books for French learners

Classic books for French learners

Looking for new books to read to improve your French? Reading French classic books is not only suited for experts! Our digital library “Culturethèque” features a variety of good classic novels adapted to learners and literature lovers, whether children and adults. Find a selection in this article. 

Travel bans all around the world do not have to prevent us from travelling in our imagination, to imaginary or real places. Social distancing does not have to prevent us from feeling love either. The following selections were part of various newsletters on two topics: the journey and love. 

If you prefer reading books over eBooks, you can use AmazonSmile to order the books we recommend, while supporting us. When you order from AmazonSmile, they donate to us at no extra cost! Find the banner at the bottom right-hand corner of this article to add us as your supporting organization.

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“L’île mystérieuse”

By Jules VERNES and Brigitte FAUCARD, digital book, 2010 - 47 pages

Who could be better than Jules VERNES to take you on an incredible journey? This classic book tells the story of five men fleeing from the American Civil War to a desert island, where strange things happen… This book has some images, and it is really good for improving your French, with exercises at the end of every chapter and definitions on each page. A book suited for both children and adults


“Vingt mille lieues sous les mers”

By Jules VERNES, digital book, 2014 - 88 pages

This is another story by the great novelist Jules VERNES. Follow Captain Nemo’s adventure under the sea, in his submarine called the Nautilus. This book is a good way to read this classic French novel which is very long.

“La Vénus d'Ille”, “Colomba”, “Carmen”

By Prosper MÉRIMÉE and Nicolas GERRIER, digital book, 2018 - 128 pages

Culturethèque is full of classic French books suited for B1-level learners! Find here 3 short stories about passion and death, written by Mérimée in the 19th century. “La Vénus d’Ile” is about a mysterious stone sculpture. “Colomba” is the story of a dilemma: a man has to choose between avenging his father or staying with his beloved. Finally, read about the passionate love story of Don José and Carmen. This book is recommended for teenagers and adults



By Prosper MÉRIMÉE and Dominique LAMBERT-THIZY, digital book, 2003 - 47 pages

This is another adaptation of this classic French story written in the 19th century. In Spain, Don José, a soldier, meets Carmen, a beautiful gypsy woman. She is a seducer, and they eventually begin a dangerous passionate love story. Find vocabulary and activities at the end of each chapter. This story is suited for teenagers and adults

Have a fun trip across the French language! We hope that these selections of books will help you learn, improve and enjoy the language from home. 
Do you want to discover new authors and practice French by discussing the books you have read? You may be interested in joining our book clubs. They are still running online during the quarantine!