Taking A Look At A Different Side of France with "In Foreign Fields: How Not To Move To France" by Susie Kelly

§ I received an ARC of this book via NetGalley to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this novel. § 

Citroen CV in France
Image by GuentherDillingen on Pixabay
"In Foreign Fields: How Not To Move To France" follows Susie who decides to full-fill a life long dream and moves to France with her husband. They found the perfect house in a rural area of the country. There is lots of space for their animals and the weather is neither too hot nor too cold.

However, - oh, yes, there is a BIG however - their dream comes in a different size and shape than one would imagine. This book is not about the fashionable lifestyle that you could find in Paris and it's even less about tight and tanned bodies that are posing for #instagood photos at the Côte d'Azur.

Susie and Terry's plan turns into a big hassle and almost everything one could image goes wrong: there is no bathroom or heating - combine this with the coldest winter yet, and numerous other mishaps and accidents.

Despite this, the book is not written like a tragic romance novel. Throughout the book her good humour and sometimes sarcastic voice shines through. In addition, I adore the way she describes life in rural France: in one part, she explains how she had been waiting in line to buy a book and when it was her turn, the cashier decided to flick through it and ask everyone else in the queue what they thought of a particular recipe. Nobody got angry or impatient, instead they cheerfully added their own opinion.

Sometimes reading "In Foreign Fields" felt like stepping into an alternative universe where everyone is very relaxed and at the same time a lot of things go wrong. Almost always when it does, Susie keeps her head held high and approaches the issues with a "can do" attitude.

Despite this upbeat and humorous memoir, it does drag from time to time. There is no perfectly defined plot per se and at times you're not quite sure where this book is going. As far as I can work out, it is only loosely written in a chronological order and each chapter discusses a topic about her French life.

Overall, "In Foreign Fields: How Not To Move To France" is a humorous account riddled with mishaps. It is enjoyable to read and gives new insights into another country and the way of living. All unashamed and without any make-up to hide the uglier bits. It is the book you can read when relaxing in a hammock with the sun shining on your face and a glas of French wine in your other hand ... 

... but it's February and far too cold for that .... and I am afraid about accidentally knocking down two walls when installing my dream hammock ....

This sounds like something that could have happened to Susie as well ... 

In Foreign Fields: How Not To Move To France by Susie Kelly
Published2018
Pages: 229
ASIN:B07KN1TF1J
Goodreads:Add to shelf


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15 comments :

  1. I like that she struggled going into a new territory. It makes it so real. I can't wait to check it out. Thank you

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  2. I vacationed in France this past summer and this book sounds interesting.

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  3. I love when a book that seems like it would be hard has good humor to it. Great review!

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    1. Thank you! I really liked the dry sense of humour Kelly used :)

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  4. I love the South of France, hate the North. I like the sound of the book. Great review.

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  5. After a brief visit years ago I knew I would never want to live there ;)

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  6. This sounds really interesting! Great review.

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  7. I just have to say I love that photo ^_^

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    1. I wish I could take credit for it. It's a great shot, isn't it?

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  8. Great review, thanks... but seriously, why does everyone always want to move to France? :)

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