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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Michael Korda's Country Matters is a charming and poignant book, filled with stories about making the transition to country life and the more subtle process of becoming part of a world geographically close to the city, but far from it in terms of lifestyle, temperament and values.
However, this is not the tale of any city dweller turned weekend farmer; Country Matters is the stylish and vibrantly recounted memoir of noted author and Simon & Schuster editor-in-chief Michael Korda.
Sophisticated citizens of the world, Korda and his wife Margaret embrace the rural countryside of Dutchess County, New York, seeing it initially as a retreat and an escape from their hectic city life. Ultimately, they regard it as a place to finally set down roots and re-connect -- both to their own pasts and to their desire to create a legacy for the future.
The book recounts tales from the couples' more than 20-year love affair with the small upstate town and the very old farmhouse they inhabit. At its heart is a warm portrait of the locals who give Pleasant Valley its color, vitality and authenticity of place. Beautifully and simply written, it is a work that reads like a valentine. Country Matters is alternately hilarious and moving, and is always deeply evocative of the characters that are the soul of the rural countryside it depicts. It is a joyful read for either a weekend getaway or a much-needed fantasy break for the armchair gentry. (Elena Simon)
Elena Simon lives in New York City.