The French House by Nick Alexander



Ive just started to read this new book by the lovely Nick Alexander and am really enjoying it.

Synopsis – CC is trapped by a job she no longer loves in an unfriendly city. So when her new boyfriend decides it’s time to sell up and move to the South of France, she decides in seconds to change her life. After all, who wouldn’t pick an azure sea, aperitifs and sunshine over a dreary commute and a rainy climate? She hadn’t expected a tumbledown farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. Or a motley assortment of surly builders, eccentric farmers and a resentful, terrifying neighbour – who happens to be her boyfriend’s aunt. Suddenly, CC’s dream of a place in the sun is looking more like a nightmare. Does she have the courage to stick it out, and make a home of her French house?

About the Author – Nick Alexander has lived and worked in the UK, the USA and France. He is the author of the 50 Reasons series of novels. Nick lives in the southern French Alps. Visit his website at


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The Ripening Sun by Patricia Atkinson


‘a story which will inspire many’ — Clitheroe Advertiser and Times, 3rd April, 2003

‘inspirational reading’ — The Week, 3rd May, 2003

It’s an excellent and enjoyable read’ — Everything France, June 2003

amazing and amusing…unputdownable — The Lady

remarkable…an extraordinarily affecting read — Daily Mail

About the book
The Ripening Sun plugs directly into the fascination for books by inspirational women who have dared to live their dream, such as Extra Virgin and The Olive Farm. An inspiring autobiography, set in romantic France, to be enjoyed by fans of wine and success stories worldwide. (20030402)
Product Description
For most people giving up the day job and moving to a beautiful area of France and living off the vines is an impossible but delicious dream. In 1990, Patricia Atkinson and her husband decided to sell up in Britain and emigrate to the Dordogne. Their idea was to buy a house with a few vines attached and employ someone to tend to the wine while they earned their living with some financial consultancy work. There followed a series of disasters: the stock market crashed leaving their small holding as their sole source of income; the first red wine harvest turned to vinegar; and Patricia’s husband returned to Britain, unable to cope with the stress. He never returned. Patricia Atkinson, whose only knowledge of wine up to that moment was ‘that it came from a bottle’ and who had not a word of French, was left to salvage their life savings form the vineyards. What follows is a remarkable story of struggle and transformation whereby her tiny 4 hectare plot has become a major estate of 21 hectares, where her Clos d’Yvigne wines have won awards and been adopted by wine merchants throughout the world and where she has been hailed as a superstar by UK wine writers.

About the Author
Patricia Atkinson has already been the subject of a Channel 4 documentary and there is further TV interest in bringing her life up to date. She has featured in interviews in The Times, The Observer and the Evening Standard, and on Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time.

Click here to buy the book

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Jamie Ivey – Extremely pale rose

Todays post is about yet another author who’s books i love, and  that have kept my passion for France alive through the winter months. He is Jamie Ivey who went on holiday to france for two weeks and ended up staying for six on a quest for the palest rose in France. I wont spoil to ending but ill just say he ended up moving lock stock and barrel to the south of France.

Notes from his publishers website

Jamie Ivey is the author of three books about the south of France: Extremely Pale RoséLa Vie en Rosé andRosé en Marché. He lives near the village of Lourmarin in the Luberon with his wife and daughter where he editsBlue Sky Living magazine and runs a rosé business. Jamie’s books have been published in the UK, the USA, Holland and China. Before becoming a writer Jamie was a corporate lawyer in the City of London. He has no regrets about giving up the rat race…

He has written four books

His first was

Extremley very pale rose


Click here to visit his book page on Amazon

Click here to follow Jamie on Twitter

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Karen Wheeler

After reading the Olive farm books by Carol Drinkwater i was hooked on tales of French life and found a book in a charity shop by Karen Wheeler called Tout Sweet.


Here is a synopsis

In her mid-thirties Karen has it all: a career as a fashion editor, a handsome boyfriend, a fab flat in west London and an array of gorgeous shoes. But when her ‘plus one’ leaves, she wonders if there is more to life than high fashion. So, she hangs up her Manolos and waves goodbye to her city lifestyle, deciding to go it alone in a run-down house in rural Poitou-Charentes, western France. Once there, she encounters a host of new friends and unsuitable suitors, soon learning that true happiness can be found in the simplest of things – a bike ride through the countryside on a summer evening, or six glasses of Pinot in a neighbour’s garden. If you’ve ever dreamed of chucking away your BlackBerry and downshifting, Tout Sweet is perfect summer reading.

She has written three books, the fourth is on its way soon I hope.

Click to buy her books on Amazon

She also has a great blog

I highly recommend her books they will capture you heart.


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The Olive Farm

One of the first books I read that really got me hooked on all things French was The Olive Farm, written by the Actress Carol Drinkwater of All creatures great and small fame.
Her book tells her story of her and her lover Michelle discovering a forgot, dilapidated old house high in the hills above Cannes, and falling in love with it. The struggle to buy it and the restoration of the house and land. I was hooked after the first chapter and have lapped up every book she has written since.
Here is a link to her website, take a look and maybe try reading The Olive Farm, you won’t be disappointed its a magical read.


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