Encore Provence: New Adventures in the South of France

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Encore Provence: New Adventures in the South of France

by Peter Mayle

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group | April 25, 2000 | Trade Paperback

4.5 out of 5 rating. 2 Reviews
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In his most delightful foray into the wonders of Provençal life, Peter Mayle returns to France and puts behind him cholesterol worries, shopping by phone, California wines, and other concerns that plagued him after too much time away.

In Encore Provence, Mayle gives us a glimpse into the secrets of the truffle trade, a parfumerie lesson on the delicacies of scent, an exploration of the genetic effects of 2,000 years of foie gras, and a small-town murder mystery that reads like the best fiction. Here, too, are Mayle''s latest tips on where to find the best honey, cheese, or chambre d''hìte the region has to offer. Lyric, insightful, sparkling with detail, Encore Provence brings us a land where the smell of thyme in the fields or the glory of a leisurely lunch is no less than inspiring.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 240 pages, 3.15 × 2.03 × 0.24 in

Published: April 25, 2000

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0679762698

ISBN - 13: 9780679762690

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– More About This Product –

Encore Provence: New Adventures in the South of France

by Peter Mayle

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 240 pages, 3.15 × 2.03 × 0.24 in

Published: April 25, 2000

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0679762698

ISBN - 13: 9780679762690

Read from the Book

From Chapter One I think it was the sight of a man power-washing his underpants that really brought home the differences, cultural and otherwise, between the old world and the new.         It was a cold, still morning in early winter, and the pulsing thumpthump, thumpthump of a high-pressure hose echoed through the village. Getting closer to the sound, it was possible to see, over a garden wall, a laundry line totally devoted to gentlemen''s underwear in a stimulating assortment of colors. The garments were under attack, jerking and flapping under the force of the water jet like hanging targets in a shooting gallery. Standing some distance away, out of ricochet range, was the aggressor, in cap and muffler and ankle-high zippered carpet slippers. He had adopted the classic stance of a soldier in combat, feet spread apart, shooting from the hip, a merciless hail of droplets raking back and forth. The underpants didn''t stand a chance.         Only a few days before, my wife and I and the dogs had arrived back in Provence after an absence of four years. Much of that time had been spent in America, where we were able to slip back into the comfortable familiarity of a language that was relatively free--although not entirely--from the problems of being socially appropriate or sexually accurate. No longer did we have to ponder the niceties of addressing people as vous or tu, or to rush to the dictionary
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From the Publisher

In his most delightful foray into the wonders of Proven&#231al life, Peter Mayle returns to France and puts behind him cholesterol worries, shopping by phone, California wines, and other concerns that plagued him after too much time away.

In Encore Provence, Mayle gives us a glimpse into the secrets of the truffle trade, a parfumerie lesson on the delicacies of scent, an exploration of the genetic effects of 2,000 years of foie gras, and a small-town murder mystery that reads like the best fiction. Here, too, are Mayle''s latest tips on where to find the best honey, cheese, or chambre d''hìte the region has to offer. Lyric, insightful, sparkling with detail, Encore Provence brings us a land where the smell of thyme in the fields or the glory of a leisurely lunch is no less than inspiring.

From the Jacket

"[Peter Mayle] is something of a wonder. . .chronicling the scene around him in irresistible prose, the joys of a bountiful climate, brilliant sun, and a splendid cuisine." --Time

"Grab a Pastis and settle in for a scintillating rendezvous. Mayle's insights have never been more thoughtful."                                                                                               --San Francisco Chronicle

"Delightful, amusing, and appealing."                                                                               --The New York Times Book Review

"Mayle's prose is, as ever, as pure and welcoming as a glass of the house wine at a Provençal cafe." --The Philadelphia Inquirer

About the Author

Peter Mayle spent fifteen years in the advertising business, first as a copywriter and then as a reluctant executive, before escaping Madison Avenue in 1975 to write educational books for children. In 1990, Mr. Mayle published A Year in Provence, which became an international bestseller. He is also the author of Toujours Provence, Hotel Pastis, A Dog''s Life, Anything Considered and Chasing Cezanne. In addition to writing books which have been translated into more than twenty languages, Mayle has contributed to the Sunday Times, Financial Times, Independent, GQ and Esquire. He and his wife and two dogs live in the South of France.

From Our Editors

 

Terrace cafés, superbly outfitted Parisians, baguettes to die for, delightfully delicate repasts in posh restaurants, pastoral countryside - this is France, n'est pas? Not entirely, as Peter Mayle explains in Encore Provence: New Adventures in the South of France. On his travels through France, he experiences a different country than the stereotypical romantic country of lore. In fact, Mayle stumbles on such places as a school for noses and a converted gas station-cum-gourmet restaurant while meeting some very eccentric and wonderful characters along the way.

Editorial Reviews

"[Peter Mayle] is something of a wonder. . .chronicling the scene around him in irresistible prose, the joys of a bountiful climate, brilliant sun, and a splendid cuisine." -- Time "Grab a Pastis and settle in for a scintillating rendezvous. Mayle''s insights have never been more thoughtful."                                                                                               -- San Francisco Chronicle "Delightful, amusing, and appealing."                                                                               -- The New York Times Book Review "Mayle''s prose is, as ever, as pure and
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Bookclub Guide

Peter Mayle spent fifteen years in the advertising business, first as a copywriter and then as a reluctant executive, before escaping Madison Avenue in 1975 to write educational books for children. In 1990, Mr. Mayle published A Year in Provence, which became an international bestseller. He is also the author of Toujours Provence, Hotel Pastis, A Dog''s Life, Anything Considered and Chasing Cezanne. In addition to writing books which have been translated into more than twenty languages, Mayle has contributed to the Sunday Times, Financial Times, Independent, GQ and Esquire. He and his wife and two dogs live in the South of France.

1. Mayle writes "Memory is a notoriously biased and sentimental editor, selecting what it wants to keep and invariably making a few cosmetic changes to past events" [p 6]. Do you think this is true of your own memories of favorite times and places?

2. How do Mayle''s experiences in America sharpen his appreciation of Provence? Why does he cite the bustling, colorful country markets as the best example of what he missed most during his time in America [p. 14]? How do the markets embody what he loves about Provence?

3. What insights does Marius''s story about the murder of the handsome butcher give you into the ways of life in a small French village? How does his detailed scenario of his own death shed light on the traditions and values of Provence [p. 173-5]?

4. How does Mayle''s "recipe for a village" compare to your own version of an ideal spot? Do you think it is possible to find such a place in America, or have we "advanced" too far to reclaim the kind of simple pleasures Mayle finds in abundance in Provence?

5. Discuss Mayle''s sharp attack on Ruth Reichl''s assessment of Provence [p. 38-43]. Is he overly defensive about his beloved home or do you think that Reichl, a well-known critic, in fact failed to prepare herself properly for her trip and lacked the curiosity and the skills to seek out all that Provence has to offer?

6. Mayle offers "Eight Ways to Spend a Summer Afternoon." Which of Mayle''s recommendations appeal to you the most and why? What other outings described in the book--for example, the trip to the olive oil factory--would you add to your list of things to do while in Provence?

7. Do Mayle''s descriptions of the people he meets conform to the impressions you may have formed on visits to France or through books and movies? Mayle suggests that the leisurely pace of life, the sunshine, and the abundance of the south encourage the general good humor and cheerfulness of the Provenceaux [p. 12]. Do you think a similar dichotomy between north and south exists in this country?

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