One of the many reasons why Americans and the French, these two great people who nourish such complex feelings towards one another, have so much difficulty getting along consistently is that the Americans like to do and the French are content to understand. But this is not to say that such understanding comes easily. The author, a French-born and naturalized American, has attempted here not only to describe the surprisingly strong differences between our two cultures, but also to explain why. He gives readers from either shore an opportunity to reflect, at a truly deep level, on their own culture, in order for us to finally be able to see what we were taking for granted and to unearth the many cultural roots of our personality. However – you’ve been warned – this discovery happens at the price of a certain loss of innocence : once you have read this book, there will be no way back.