(Not Quite) Mastering the Art of French Living (Hardcover)
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A Wall Street Journal Bestseller! Let Mark Greenside, the author of I’ll Never Be French introduce you to the region of Brittany. In the tradition of Peter Mayle’s A Year in Provence, it will entice you into a world of color and flavor that most of us only fantasize about.
Experienced Francophiles and armchair travelers alike will delight in Greenside’s exploring the practical and philosophical questions of French life, vividly brought to life by his humor and affection for his community.
Every year upon arriving in Plobien, the small Breton town where he spends his summers, American writer Mark Greenside picks back up where he left off with his faux-pas–filled Francophile life. Mellowed and humbled, but not daunted (OK, slightly daunted), he faces imminent concerns: What does he cook for a French person? Who has the right-of-way when entering or exiting a roundabout? Where does he pay for a parking ticket? And most dauntingly of all, when can he touch the tomatoes?
Despite the two decades that have passed since Greenside’s snap decision to buy a house in Brittany and begin a bi-continental life, the quirks of French living still manage to confound him. Continuing the journey begun in his 2009 memoir about beginning life in France, (Not Quite) Mastering the Art of French Living details Greenside’s daily adventures in his adopted French home, where the simplest tasks are never straightforward but always end in a great story. Through some hits and lots of misses, he learns the rules of engagement, how he gets what he needs—which is not necessarily what he thinks he wants—and how to be grateful and thankful when (especially when) he fails, which is more often than he can believe.
“This is my world, the Old World that is constantly new to me. I’ve been coming to France—Brittany—for more than twenty years now, and I’m still trying to master the art of French living. For a guy who likes to think he knows what he’s doing, it’s been an unexpectedly bumpy ride.”
About the Author
Mark Greenside has been a civil rights activist, Vietnam War protestor, anti-draft counselor, Vista Volunteer, union leader, and college professor. His stories have appeared in The Sun, The Literary Review, Cimarron Review, The Nebraska Review, Beloit Fiction Journal, The New Laurel Review, Crosscurrents, Five Fingers Review, and The Long Story, as well as other journals and magazines, and he is the author of a short story collection, I Saw a Man Hit His Wife. Greenside’ s memoir about life in France, I’ ll Never Be French, remains one of the bestselling books about Brittany since its release in 2009. Greenside resides in Alameda, California, and Brittany, France.