This is a very good and thorough guide book, exactly what you would expect from Frommer's. To say the least, it is easy to go broke in Paris in a very short time, but there is no need for that either in Paris or in other cities thought notoriously expensive. In Geneva you can see some of the highest prices for consumer goods on the face of the planet, but I ate well there for a very reasonable cost and without much research either. Paris is a lot bigger of course, and unless money is no object I would call it a good investment to buy this guide.
You will find all the expected chapters here - eating and drinking, sightseeing, entertainment, events, accommodation, culture and whatnot (especially whatnot). One section that I was particularly pleased to see covered the topic of eating in restaurants with one's children. Give the French their due, they handle that matter perhaps better than any other nation does, and you should be able to expect considerate treatment and reasonable charges. In general this book comes up trumps when it is a matter of identifying good value eateries, because in my experience there are plenty of them, but of course you need a bit of guidance unless your knowledge of the city is exhaustive. It's a pity in that case that there seems to be no help here for vegetarians, and I think that sufficient grounds for taking a fifth star away from a volume that in most other ways would have qualified for the top rating. I still recall my daughter returning from a trip to Paris and saying that she never wanted to see cheese again in her life, because there just seemed to be nothing else for a vegetarian to eat. There is a section headed `say fromage' which is fine and appropriate for an omnivore such as I am, but not for a hopeful visitor denied alternatives.
Naturally this book is not exclusively about downmarket consumption. If your heart sinks at seeing a particularly long chapter on museums, well, what did you expect? Otherwise the aim seems to be to describe the Parisian scene in a fairly comprehensive way, with an eye for opportunities to economise. One item did strike me as slightly odd from this viewpoint, namely the November ritual of the Beaujolais nouveau. Perhaps this annual feast is still celebrated in Paris, but I know from experience that wine retailers in England have washed their hands of the whole business in recent years. The quality was always rather variable, and it was dependably overpriced.
In line with up-to-date attitudes, the gay scene is duly included. One quirky and definitely unexpected inclusion is beekeeping. Why this is here I don't know, but it is a very pleasant and unusual touch, and it gave me hope that the plague that has affected bees in Britain (as well as elsewhere or so I had thought) in late years may not be quite as bad as I feared. There is nothing said about trying to eat cheaply at the airports when one is immured therein between flights. Very likely I should not have been looking for such a chapter, but either way let me say that bargain options do not seem to exist at all at Charles de Gaulle airport. The credit card bill that I incurred on such a recent transit made my eyes water when I saw it, and I doubt that the situation will have eased currently, with the £ sterling plummeting below all currencies other than the Zimbabwean dollar. I have another reason for being unable to forget these stopovers, namely that on the last occasion, in June 2008, I had just returned from Rio de Janeiro on Air France flight 447. One year later this flight was destroyed with the loss of all on board during a storm over the equator. Of the 228 lives that were lost there were presumably many who had been looking forward to the visit to Paris that fate denied them, and may God in His mercy lend them grace.