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A Year in Provence

A Year in Provence

Написано Peter Mayle

Озвучено Peter Mayle


A Year in Provence

Написано Peter Mayle

Озвучено Peter Mayle

оценки:
4/5 (90 оценки)
Длина:
2 hours
Издатель:
Издано:
Nov 1, 2004
ISBN:
9781427208576
Формат:
Аудиокнига

Описание

More than 40,000 listeners have enjoyed this story on cassette. Now anyone who's ever dreamed of getting away from it all can enjoy the charms and challenges of A Year in Provence Peter Mayle and his wife had been to Provence as tourists. They had dreamed of one day trading the long, gray winters and damp summers of England for the blue skies and sunshine of the coast of southern France. And then they made it happen. They moved into an old farmhouse at the foot of the Luberon mountains and embarked on a wonderful, if at times bewildering, new life. Among their experiences that first year: being inundated with builders and visitors, grappling with the native accent, taking part in goat races and supervising the planting of a new vineyard. Peter Mayle personally recounts the pleasures and frustrations of Provençal life-sharing in a way no one else can, the unique and endearing culture that is Provence. A Year in Provence was a New York Times bestseller for three years and won the British Book Awards' "Best Travel Book of the Year."
Издатель:
Издано:
Nov 1, 2004
ISBN:
9781427208576
Формат:
Аудиокнига

Об авторе

Peter Mayle spent 15 years in the advertising business before escaping in 1975 to write books, including his bestselling A Year in Provence and Toujours Provence. His work has been translated into 17 languages and he has contributed to a variety of newspapers and magazines. He lives with his wife in Provence.


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4.1
90 оценки / 54 Обзоры
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  • (4/5)
    In this book, Mayle relates how he and his wife purchased a property in Provence and how moving there was an eye-opening experience for them about the ins and outs of the French way of life. There isn't really much of an over-arching theme to this book, unlike the many expatriate-in-France memoirs that have followed this publication, but rather it just moves along chronologically with all the big and small events that happen to the Mayles over their first year as French inhabitants. These range from a variety of home improvement projects to shopping at the market to attending hunting parties and more. Along the way, they struggle with re-learning everyday customs (e.g., how many times to kiss a neighbor on the cheek in greeting versus their English habit of shaking hands). Mayle can be witty with his portrayals of little foibles and undoubtedly many of his observations about various cultural norms remain true; however, enough time has passed that certain things have changed (e.g., the European Union forming!). While this was an interesting enough read, I didn't find it compelling enough to want to read the follow-up books. At this point, I'd prefer to read something a little more up-to-date if I'm going to go for another 'hey-we-moved-to-France!' title.
  • (3/5)

    This and other reviews can be found on Reading Between Classes

    Cover Impressions: I really enjoy the mish-mash of elements in this cover.

    The Gist: Peter Mayle and his wife have visited Provence several times and fallen in love with the picturesque countryside and the relaxed style of life. They have decided to take the jump and buy a property there. Peter chronicles their first year in their new home.

    Review: This was a book club pick and not something I would normally have chosen for myself. The writing was enjoyable enough but I suffered along with the lack of a plot. Instead of a tale with a beginning, middle and end - I was presented with a large collection of anecdotes. While these were, in themselves, enjoyable, they did not lend to engrossment in the novel or inspire me to pick it up again after a few hours of distraction elsewhere.

    This book felt like a lazy summer day, pleasant, but lacking anything of substance. As such, I am having difficulty finding things to write about. There was nothing inherently BAD about the book, but there was nothing particularly impressive either. One issue that I did encounter was the descriptions of food. At the beginning, these were interesting and charming but, as time wore on, they became tedious. By the end of the book, I felt that I had sat with Peter and his wife at every meal for an entire year!

    All in all, A Year in Provence is a light, easy read perfectly suited to an easy going vacation or simply a trip to the beach. However, if you are looking for something with a little more substance, it would be best to move on to something else on the shelf.
  • (4/5)
    This will make you want to visit France. And Eat. Fair warning.
  • (4/5)
    A very pleasant light read about an English couple who buy a farmhouse in Provence. Their first year includes the joys of home renovations and house guests, interesting neighbours, grape picking and mushroom gathering, and mouth-watering descriptions of food and wine. It even gave me one laugh-out-loud moment.
  • (3/5)
    The travel porn aspect of this was great - I wished that I could eat what they ate and have two bottles of wine with every lunch and ramble around in a forest with my dogs.

    On the other hand, it was also like, I get it, you guys are rich. And if there had been anything to the story or to their personalities that didn't revolve around that, it wouldn't have bothered me.

    Also, he so specifically describes the people and places of the village and not always in the best way - that doesn't seem very smart.
  • (4/5)
    lovely, light, entertaining, funny, mouth watering.
  • (4/5)
    The French way of life in Luberon is described with humor, insight and a lot of details. Found myself laughing yet appreciating a completely different environment. Also a good precursor to visiting there for an extended amount of time.
  • (4/5)
    Good cheap fun, although seems stretched a little thin by the end.
  • (3/5)
    When I first read this as a wee Ashley, I was enthralled. I'd been abroad some as a child, but never longer than a week or two at a time and I'd always secretly dreamt of selling everything and moving someplace new, learning the language as I immersed myself in the town. This reread has not held up to the test of time; I feel like I have enjoyed Under the Tuscan Sun now more than Provence. As one of the first "new town" memoirs I have read (and enjoyed), I have to say, this time around I found myself skipping through pages when I used to pour over them. Is it because I've read better ones since then? Maybe. Do I still love France? Of course.
  • (2/5)
    This is the story of the first year in Provence of Peter Mayle and his wife, who moved from England to a 200-year old stone farm house in a rural part of this French region. Each month has its chapter. It's definitely well-written and nicely descriptive, and it's an easy, flowing read, but ultimately I found this dull. I couldn't help comparing this to my recent read of Bryson's travelogue about Australia, In a Sunburned Country. By the middle of the first page I was madly grinning, at page 17 for the first--and not last--time I laughed out loud. With Mayle there was only the occasional, and quite suppressible, twitch upward of the lips. Only mildly amusing. And while I felt I learned a lot about Australia from Bryson with every page... well, Mayle spends a whole lot of wordage on the renovation of his house with the biggest drama involving the woes of transporting his stone table. His wife strangely remains a cipher throughout. The most vivid parts were the description of the food. Ah, truffles! If you do decide to read this, I recommend you do so on a full stomach--and not while trying to diet!
  • (5/5)
    Upon reading this book for the second time, I am reminded of the skill Peter Mayle has in describing the foibles of the Provencal while at the same time making the shortcomings seem a source of delight. Mr. Mayle and his wife suffer through a year of delays and other provocations in the remodeling of their house, but appear to so enjoy the laborers who come in fits and starts that the experience is worth the inconvenience and frustration, not to mention being material for a very popular and successful book. A good guide to the mannners, customs, food, wine and seasonal changes in a small town in Provence.
  • (3/5)
    An easy and overall rather pleasant read but I found the characters too romanticized and was irritated by some French sayings supposedly said by French people that are not even correct French. Being a French expat, the parts I enjoyed were the ones about food!
  • (4/5)
    What fun. Picked this book up after I recently vacationed in Provence, and got a big kick out of it. Well written, and though written 20 odd years ago, holds up well. Funny lovable characters throughout, and a true love for the region comes shining through.
  • (4/5)
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Reminds me of where I live now, except I'm in Spain, not France.
  • (4/5)
    Author Peter Mayle and his wife bought a house in Provence, and this book chronicles their first year living there. Three primary themes run through the chapters - house repairs, house guests, and food. As a whole, the book is well-written - almost like getting letters from a witty friend. But I have to admit my favorite parts were the parts about food. Given that I usually eat meals on my way to or from little league games, the ideas of a multi-course meal paired with good wine, good bread, and good olive oil sounds fantastic to me. I enjoyed living vicariously through Mayle.
  • (3/5)
    This was a book club pick. This year we decided to pick a different genre for each month and this month is non-fiction. This book is a literary travel book. Mayle gives a month by month recap of his life in Provence, France. Most of this book centers on food and at times I found the description to be way too much. While I like a bit of description I found that this went overboard. I almost felt like the author didn't have anything else to write about. It seems that Mayle spent a quiet year relaxing, renovating and hosting guests and when it came time to write a book he needed a little filler. This means pages upon pages of listed different foods that he ate and at times he even goes further by explaining where some of the food comes from (ie truffles). I ahve to say that there were a few cute parts to the book but overall I found it to be a bit boring. The book is not long so it didn't take me very long to read otherwise I may have abandoned it. One positive thing I can say is that it did make me want to visit Provence. It just seems like a place were one can get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and really relax and enjoy a few glasses of wine. Overall I give this book 2.5 out of 5 stars.
  • (2/5)
    Besides several funny stories, I found this book mostly boring. I quite disliked the long lists of dishes served in many restaurants the author visited and inclusions of French words. My advice is: read this book on vacation in one evening (safely skip the food descriptions), laugh a bit and forget about it.
  • (3/5)
    Light hearted and amusing, but the author's tendency to self agrandisement (which was widely criticised in the novel I never got round to reading) already shows through.
  • (3/5)
    Clearly there is some appeal in Mayle's travelogue that simply does not get through to me. I found the book highly forgettable. Not unpleasant, mind you, but the sort of thing that one would be hard-pressed to recall three days after reading; rather like eating unsalted boiled rice. I was also a put off by the oh-so-superior tone of the book and Mayle's unpleasant habit of referring to his wife as though she functioned merely as an extension of himself, without a single independent thought, action, or personality quirk to call her own.
  • (5/5)
    How can you not love a book that begins, "The year began with lunch." Probably the most popular travelogue ever, A Year in Provence chronicles a year in the life of Peter Mayle, a former ad guy who left that behind to buy and live in a farmhouse in Provence. A wonderful portrayal of adjustment to new surroundings and appreciating people and lifestyles different from your own. Joie de vivre,
  • (4/5)
    A light read and easy that can be enjoyed slowly, a little bit at a time. It was like a little holiday to an entirely different place, and all the culinary descriptions were like a taste of Provence for me. I hope that one day I could take a real trip there.
  • (4/5)
    Here is a joyful book that stays with you long after the cover is closed. Mayle describes his move to So France's Provence area and daily life and his discoveries of the locals and their idiosyncrasies. Fun read.
  • (5/5)
    This little book that covers a year in the colourful French province of Provence surprised and delighted me. This type of book is far from my usual genre, but I read it because a family member recommended it, and I loved it! The book was fascinating and extremely funny. Peter Mayle portrays the wonderful local people of Provence with humour and with great appreciation. His portrayal of Menicucci the garoulous plumber made me laugh out loud several times. He turns out to be the hinge that the story swings on because Mayle and his wife keep having to go to back to him to solve another problem. The book is part travelogue, but it is a study of human nature. It made me want to go to Provence myself to experience the people and of course the wonderful food! Make no mistake. This book is really about the wonderful and varied food culture of this wonderful part of the world. I really loved this book!
  • (3/5)
    Very amusing journey of Peter Mayle and his wife trying to adjust to living in Provence with all of its quirkiness and routine. I enjoyed this book.
  • (4/5)
    I really loved this book. It conjured up all that's good about France.
  • (1/5)
    A Year in Provence recounts the experience of an Englishman who moved to the south of France, restored an old house, and ate and drank extremely well. It was certainly an easy read, and mildly diverting. But I didn't come away with any sense of Provence as a place or a culture. I didn't get to know the narrator or his weirdly anonymous wife. There was a lot of "local color" in portrayals of the workmen and merchants encountered by the Englishman; the portrayals struck me as patronizing as much as affectionate, and it didn't escape me that the author didn't actually make any Provencal friends.
  • (4/5)
    A fun read that conjures up images of an almost idyllic lifestyle in Provence. Although I enjoyed this book, I preferred the follow up 'Encore Provence'.
  • (5/5)
    In prose that skips along lightly, Mayle records the highlights of each month, from the aberration of snow in February and the algae-filled swimming pool of March through the tourist invasions and unpredictable renovations of the summer months to a quiet Christmas alone. Throughout the book, he paints colorful portraits of his neighbors, the grocers and butchers and farmers who amuse, confuse, and befuddle him at every turn. A Year in Provence is part memoir, part homeowner's manual, part travelogue, and all charming fun.
  • (3/5)
    Is it Mayle we have to blame for the upsurge in recent years of people moving to France? It's possible that this book accounts for as many making the shift as a strong currency or a healthy economy ever could.The book is exactly what its title suggests it should be -the story of Mayle's first year living in Provence. I can't recall how he makes his money from all of this, but it proves a fascinating tale of an escape from the rat race; bucolic and enchanting enough to avoid sentimentality.
  • (5/5)
    Fun, fun, fun. The first and best of Mayle's Provence memoirs. The characters are wonderful and hilarious. His remodeling conundrums are laugh out loud entertaining.