This debut novel, a travelogue/love story by the author of a number of European travel books, has much to offer in its description of food, wine and history, but little to say about amour. American-born travel writer Meg Parker lives with her husband and two children in a centuries-old farmhouse in the Lorraine region of France. With her fruit cellar as her home office, Meg is working on another guidebook and a French text when she receives an offer to write a book on French history. Her goofy British husband, Nigel, seems happiest drinking with his friends, her children are needy, and after little deliberation, Meg accepts the offer. Her relationship with the book's photographer, Jean-Jacques Chabrol (J-J to his amis), is stormy from their first e-mail exchange. The conflict between the two (he, a typically passionate Frenchman, she, the typical overeducated American living abroad) is as predictable as their explosive love affair. Their steamy, France-hopping days and nights are punctuated by Meg's visits home and her stabs at deciding whom she wants more: Nigel or J-J. Coons's lush novel is most seductive when dealing with French gastronomical history, but the love story never removes itself from the boilerplate. (July)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
The Feasting Seasonby Nancy Coons
Meg Parker, an American travel-book writer, lives in the Lorraine countryside with her two small children and a neglectful husband. Domestic life is beginning to take its toll until Meg is offered her dream assignment: to write a guidebook about French history. Unfortunately, there is a catch. Jean-Jacques, a scruffy and imperious photographer, has been
Meg Parker, an American travel-book writer, lives in the Lorraine countryside with her two small children and a neglectful husband. Domestic life is beginning to take its toll until Meg is offered her dream assignment: to write a guidebook about French history. Unfortunately, there is a catch. Jean-Jacques, a scruffy and imperious photographer, has been assigned to the project. As the dueling pair visits each region in search of the past, what they find is the colorful, food-filled present—the festive bullfights in the Camargue, the sacred gypsy pilgrimage at Stes-Maries-de-la-Mer, the pictographs and lightning storms of Mount Bégo. And over the course of mouthwatering meals—of lamb daube, paella and rosé, bull steak and anchioade, Brebis and strawberries—their antagonistic collaboration turns into a fiery love affair.
Meg's notions about history—about what we preserve and how we accept the new—evolve, and in the end, she must reconcile her two lives and decide what to hold on to, and what to let go.
- Workman Publishing Company, Inc.
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)
What People are saying about this
"Prepare yourself for a delectable romp through the French countryside in this wonderful novel. You'll enjoy all the glorious tastes and pleasures that France has to offer as well as taking an enticing journey into the affairs of the heart. This book made me homesick for France."
—Katharine Davis, author of Capturing Paris
Meet the Author
Nancy Coons is the author of Escape to Provence, Escape to the Riviera, Fodor’s Provence and the Cote d’Azur, andFodor’s Switzerland and a contributor to guides on France, Italy, Belgium, and Luxembourg. Her commentaries on French life have aired on NPR’s All Things Considered, and she has contributed to Saveur, the International Herald Tribune, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times. She lives in a three-hundred-year-old farmhouse in the Lorraine region of France with her husband and two daughters.
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The characters. The cities. The countryside. Everything was portrayed so vividly in this book. I felt the passion between Meg and JJ. I felt her disdain for returning home to her husband. It is a great piece of writing and I hope that Nancy Coons will soon come out with another one of these books. Simply amazing.
I truly enjoyed reading this book. This descriptions of France and the food are mouth-watering. The characters seemed real, filled with joys and foibles. I didn't want it to end.
The cover and the flyleaf made it sound like a great mix of food, travel and romance. It was in fact a tired old story of a female writer having an affair with her photographer. Boring plot, sterotypical characters, and some just down right disgusting details -do we really need a description of the main character using the bidet?