Hotel Pastis: A Novel of Provence

Peter Mayle, Author
Peter Mayle, Author Alfred A Knopf Inc $23 (389p) ISBN 978-0-679-40229-9
Reviewed on: 08/30/1993
Release date: 09/01/1993
Paperback - 519 pages - 978-0-7862-0123-5
Analog Audio Cassette - 2 pages - 978-0-679-42713-1
Hardcover - 978-0-679-42903-6
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-679-75111-3
Hardcover - 519 pages - 978-0-7862-0122-8
Hardcover - 978-0-517-14462-6
Hardcover - 978-0-7451-4310-1
Hardcover - 320 pages - 978-0-14-023864-8
Hardcover - 978-2-02-030743-7
Hardcover - 8 pages - 978-1-4084-8560-6
Ebook - 223 pages - 978-0-307-79191-7
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As fans of A Year in Provence and Toujours Provence may have suspected, Mayle's skills as a writer translate well into fiction. His first novel is as adroit, funny and charming as his previous works, and again it is set in his favorite region of France. Newly divorced, disenchanted and bored with his job as a director of a prestigious British ad agency, Simon Shaw is delighted when beautiful Frenchwoman Nicole Bouvier suggests that he rescue from bankruptcy a half-finished hotel in the drolly named town of Brassiere-les-Deux-Eglises. Taking a huge risk, Simon resigns from his agency and becomes patron of the new establishment in the picturesque Luberon region. In counterpoint, Mayle crosscuts to the escapades of a lovable band of criminals who are conspiring to break into the vault of a bank in the neighboring village of Isle-sur-Sorges. As the threads of the plot begin to converge, Mayle displays his satiric eye for social foibles by skewering advertising execs in England and the U.S.; he is equally adept at evoking typical Provencal villagers. Wickedly sharp and sympathetic at the same time, his characterizations are accurate down to nuances of class differences, voice, accent and vocabulary. The novel is as smooth as a sip of pastis, and one hopes that Mayle will find his segue into fiction equally addictive. 100,000 first printing. (Oct.)
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