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Driving Over Lemons: An Optimist in…

Driving Over Lemons: An Optimist in Andalucia

by Chris Stewart

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1,1224610,938 (3.61)52

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English (40)  Spanish (4)  Catalan (1)  German (1)  All languages (46)
Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
A thoroughly enjoyable read. Unlike the Year in Provence books, the author and his wife buy a farm in Spain to make a working farm of it. They connect with the local farmers and the author doesn't make fun of them or treat them as local flavour but really becomes friends with them. Well, perhaps one or two ex-pats are not the closest of friends. A lovely book.
  amyem58 | Apr 14, 2018 |
It was a gift for my birthday. I struggled through read the first chapters. Couldn't believe my eyes. I'm thinking of adding it to my horror shelf.

( )
  Tacuazin | Feb 28, 2018 |
  AriadneAranea | Jan 13, 2018 |
A charming, gentle read. ( )
  wdwilson3 | Aug 10, 2017 |
I bought this book years ago, solely based on the cover, and was not too impressed with it. Since I only about started it back in 2004, I brought it with me to Andalusia, as it felt appropriate. And it was!!
I still think who ever did the cover is a genius. But, the book, with its quirky characters, Chris writing that for me hits the correct line between sarcasm and optimism, the stories, the people.. I have enjoyed every page of this book, even after coming home from Spain. ( )
  Bookoholic73 | May 15, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
Entre limones es una de esas cosas raras y maravillosas: un libro divertido e intuitivo que encanta desde la primera página a la última…y es que alguien que, sin tener ni idea y sin pensárselo dos veces, se mete a reconstruir y llevar un cortijo en un rincón perdido de una sierra de España, claramente no puede estar haciendo nada malo. Chris nos transporta a Las Alpujarras, una excéntrica región del sur de Granada (España), y nos mete en una serie de contratiempos con una combinación simpática de granjeros y pastores campesinos, viajeros New Age y expatriados.
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'Well, this is no good, I don't want to live here!' I said as we drove along yet another tarmac road behind a row of white-washed houses.
I laid bare for him the fripperies of our existence. It seemed somehow wanting when compared with the elemental earthiness of his.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0953522709, Paperback)

When English sheep shearer Chris Stewart (once a drummer for Genesis) bought an isolated farmhouse in the mountains outside of Granada, Spain, he was fully aware that it didn't have electricity, running water, or access to roads. But he had little idea of the headaches and hilarity that would follow (including scorpions, runaway sheep, and the former owner who won't budge). He also had no idea that his memoir about southern Spain would set a standard for literary travel writing.

This rip-roaringly funny book about seeking a place in an earthy community of peasants and shepherds gives a realistic sense of the hassles and rewards of foreign relocation. Part of its allure stems from the absence of rose-colored glasses, mainly Stewart's refusal to merely coo about the piece of heaven he's found or to portray all residents as angels. Stewart's hilarious and beautifully written passages are deep in their honest perceptions of the place and the sometimes xenophobic natives, whose reception of the newcomers ranges from warm to gruff.

After reading about struggles with dialects, animal husbandry, droughts, flooding, and such local rituals as pig slaughters and the rebuilding of bridges, you may not wish to live Chris Stewart's life. But you can't help but admire him and his wife, Ana, for digging out a niche in these far-flung mountains, for successfully befriending the denizens, and for so eloquently and comically telling the truth. The rich, vibrant, and unromanticized candor of Driving over Lemons makes it a laudable standout in a genre too often typified by laughable naiveté. --Melissa Rossi

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:49 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

At age 17, Chris Stewart retired as the drummer of Genesis, his schoolboy band, and launched a new career as a sheep shearer and travel writer. This book describes his idyllic life on a remote mountain farm in Andaluca.

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Average: (3.61)
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1.5 1
2 18
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3 76
3.5 37
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