A Year in Provence Author:Peter Mayle They had been there often as tourists. They had cherished the dream of someday living all year under the Provencal sun. And suddenly it happened. — Here is the month-by-month account of the charms and frustrations that Peter Mayle and his wife -- and their two large dogs -- experience their first year in the remote country of the Luberon restorin... more »g a two-centuries-old stone farmhouse that they bought on sight. From coping in January with the first mistral, which comes howling down from the Rhone Valley and wreaks havoc with the pipes, to dealing as the months go by with the disarming promises and procrastination of the local masons and plumbers, Peter Mayle delights us with his strategies for survival. He relishes the growing camaraderie with his country neighbors -- despite the rich, soupy, often impenetrable patois that threatens to separate them. He makes friends with boar hunters and truffle hunters, a man who eats foxes, and another who bites dentists; he discovers the secrets of handicapping racing goats and of disarming vipers. And he comes to dread the onslaught of tourists who disrupt his tranquility.
In this often hilarious, seductive book Peter Mayle manages to transport us info all the earthy pleasures of Provencal life and lets us live vicariously in a tempo governed by seasons, not by days. George Lang, who was smitten, suggests: "Get a glass of marc, lean back in your most comfortable chair, and spend a delicious year in Provence."« less
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I thoroughly enjoyed this book...spent last night after supper at the table sipping wine and reading bits out loud to my husband! I found it a bit eye-opening to read about the more "rural" French....they are surprisingly "down-to-earth". Some of us Americans tend to think of all the French as sophisticated snobs...apparently those are the Parisiennes to some degree, but the French farmer and laborer are much like us...only with a huge zest for life...and food and drink-whew! I also found it interesting the way the French get around the exorbitant taxes imposed by a typical European socialist government...we may, très infortuné, need some of those tips in the years to come here in America.
I really enjoyed reading this, although, I would have probably enjoyed it more if I knew French. :) There are French words and phrases scattered throughout, but it is not essential to understand French to read the book. The book was very enjoyable, regardless. I enjoyed the author's sense of humor. Overall, I would recommend this book.
A lighthearted account of the first year's happenings when two English writers move to Provence. Recurring characters include restauranteurs, neighbors, handymen, and their wives. Fun commentary on the adjustment necessary to move to another country, buy a house, renovate, and finally settle in as townspeople.
A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle is a humorous account of a British couple who moves to an old farmhouse in Southern France. Thinking back on this book, the IHOP slogan keeps running through my mind. “Come hungry, leave happy.” I read this book over twenty years ago when it was first published and I still drool when I think of all the delectable food Peter Mayle mentioned. From the “sugared slices of fried bread called tranches dorées,” to the “cold roasted peppers, slippery with olive oil and speckled with fresh basil, tiny mussels wrapped in bacon and barbequed on skewers, salad and cheese,” my taste buds never forgot my little jaunt to Provence with Mr. Mayle. His writing style is memorable, too. With charming wit Mayle takes us with him month by month as we explore his new surroundings and neighbors. We learn about truffle hunting, the mistrals, and how to move a frozen stone table with a little help from your friends. I highly recommend this book enjoyable book! Read other reviews at http://readinginthegarden.blogspot.com