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A Year in the World: Journeys of a Passionate Traveler by Frances Mayes (2006-03-14) Audio CD – January 1, 1771
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I almost didn't make it through the preface and first chapter of the book. It wasn't quite clear as to why the author and her husband resigned their positions for 'time and freedom.' The journeys in the book were accomplished over a time period of several years, not just in one year as the title would suggest. Perhaps the time was needed to write this book with a lot of superlatives. A random selection of one page includes a 'grandiose exit,' smeared sky, 'gold orb,' and 'miraculous places' in just one paragraph. I don't doubt that the author is a passionate traveller but I'm not sure that she is any more so than most, if not all, of her readers.
We enjoy stretching out our travel pleasure by reading good books about our favorite places. For us that is England and I really enjoyed the chapters on England and Scotland including the author's interest in gardens and gardening. I wished those two chapters were much longer. And, maybe that is part of the reason I was unable to sustain an interest in the book. Since so many areas are covered, there isn't as much information as we'd like on any one of the individual journeys.
For me, A Year in the World is pleasant but not compelling reading.
This book may not be as dense with the qualities that make me read her work so slowly, savoring every phrase, but there is a feast here to enjoy.
Every time I read one of her books I find myself thinking she could be a friend if life had so led. Then I quickly remember that probably everyone feels the same way. lol
it was set in one locale. In this true novel, Frances and husband travel across Europe to places they always wanted to visit. I enjoyed the history and the references to literary figures ( and cultural as well) as I was a teacher many years. Not quite a good beach book but a good book to read a litle of every night.