Six months after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Benjamin Franklin arrived in France on a special mission. It was his charge to secure assistance from the French monarchy to establish a republic in America. Franklin, at age 70, was one of the most famous men in the world yet he was neither a politician nor a diplomat. And, to be successful, this seemingly home-spun representative of a newly-formed republic would have to convince the sophisticated ministers of a thousand-year old monarchy that it would be in their best interest to furnish the American colonies with money, credit, munitions, gunpowder, and more. Franklin, renowned as a great inventor, spent the next eight years in Paris brilliantly inventing what would become his greatest achievement: French support for the American Revolution. Come along on Benjamin Franklin’s mission: it is a true adventure tale recounted through intriguing anecdotes that includes a cast of politicians, statesmen, courtiers, patriots, profiteers, and spies as eccentric as Franklin himself. We will read and discuss the work Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Stacy Schiff: A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America (Henry Holt and Company, 2005). Join us!