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Road to Rouen [Paperback]

Ben Hatch
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (386 customer reviews)
Price: 11.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Kindle Edition 3.99  
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Paperback, 23 May 2013 11.99  
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Book Description

23 May 2013

Ben Hatch is on the road again. Commissioned to write a guidebook about France (despite not speaking any French) he sets off with visions of relaxing chateaux and refined dining. Ten thousand miles later his family's been attacked by a donkey, had a run-in with a death-cult and, after a near drowning and a calamitous wedding experience involving a British spy, his own marriage is in jeopardy. A combination of obsessions about mosquitoes, French gravel and vegetable theme parks mean it's a bumpy ride as Ben takes a stand against tyrannical French pool attendants, finds himself running with the bulls in Pamplona and almost starring in a snuff movie after a near fatal decision to climb into a millionaire's Chevrolet Blazer.

Funny and poignant, Road to Rouen asks important questions about life, marriage and whether it's ever acceptable to tape baguette to your children's legs to smuggle lunch into Disneyland Paris.

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Road to Rouen + Are We Nearly There Yet?: A Family's 8000 Mile Car Journey Around Britain
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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Headline (23 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755364546
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755364541
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (386 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 300,358 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ben Hatch's latest novel is called THE P45 DIARIES: How To Get Sacked From Every Job in Britain. Currently being developed as a BBC sitcom, and a former BBC Radio 4 Book of The Year, it was previously titled The Lawnmower Celebrity and is based loosely on Ben's woeful experiences of his teens and 20s when his dad thought he was an oaf.
Ben was born in London and grew up there, in Manchester and also in Buckinghamshire, where he lived in a windmill that meant he was called Windy Miller at school for years, though he's not been scarred by this experience at all. He now lives in Brighton with his tiny wife Dinah, and two children, in a normal house. He likes cheese and is balding although he disguises this fact by spiking his hair to a great height to distract people he wishes to impress.
Ben (who is actually writing this and pretending to be someone else)has written for The Guardian, The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Daily Mail and The Daily Express among other newspapers. Previously he wrote ROAD TO ROUEN: A 10,000 Mile Journey In A Cheese-filled Passat that was a Number One bestseller and ARE WE NEARLY THERE YET? 8,000 Miles Round Britain In A Vauxhall Astra, a BBC Radio 2 Book of the Year, and also a Number One bestseller. It is also under development as a film by Island Pictures.
Ben is the tallest Hatch who ever lived (5ft 9in) and is the son of Sir David Hatch, the radio performer and producer whose shadow Ben doesn't at all feel under. He also maintains that he knows the cure for the common cold (tweet him at @BenHatch to find this out) and that one of his relatives was John Couch-Adams who discovered the planet Neptune. Apparently, his aunty told him.

Many years ago his novel the International Gooseberry was published by Orion. It was about a hapless backpacker with a huge ungovernable toenail. It was described as "hysterical and surprisingly sad" by the Daily Express. Ben Hatch was on the long-list of Granta's 2003 list of the most promising 20 young authors in the UK, but missed out on final inclusion possibly because of the toenail stuff. In association with his wife Dinah, he has also written three guidebooks for Frommer's.

You can visit Ben Hatch at although his page is a bit rubbish.

Product Description


Ben Hatch makes me laugh more and more (John Cleese)

Magnifique! Honest, warm and written with feeling and flair (Terry Wogan)

A French odyssey to rival the greatest adventures in history - if you like jokes, and a car full of cheese.

As funny and touching as an overfriendly clown.

(Danny Wallace)

I am going to shout this very loudly. YOU MUST READ THIS BOOK. The funniest travel memoir you will read this year. Ben Hatch is a genius. The funny bits were so funny. The sad bits were so sad. (Lisa Jewell)

Fantastically funny and touching. I laughed and winced and will never look at baguettes in the same way again (Sophie Kinsella)

Highly recommended to anyone holidaying in France this year. Or to anyone holidaying anywhere. Or to anyone holidaying with kids. Or to anyone with kids but no holiday plans. Basically to anyone with a sense of humour. (Charlotte Heathcote Daily Express)

Ben Hatch is a very funny writer. His work is fresh and heartfelt (David Jason)

I loved Ben Hatch's funny, honest, touching memoir (Jenny Colgan)

Goes from one hilarious situation to another. Very entertaining. The author is naturally funny (The Sun)

Haven't laughed as much in ages (Mike Gayle)

An Epic French odyssey (Daily Express)

Parents will either roar with laughter or roll their eyes with recognition at this family road-trip memoir. (Metro)

Book Description

From the bestselling author of ARE WE NEARLY THERE YET? (Radio 2 Book of the Year & voted Amazon Customers' Fave Kindle Read 2011) comes a new hilarious and touching story of travel chaos.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious yet utterly believable 9 Aug 2014
By gdj
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a really funny book about a man writing a guidebook about France. Despite the humour, every single event in this book remains completely believable, and the main 'characters' are easy to identify with. All in all, a great read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A trying trip through France 1 Aug 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book was a little tedious at the begining but then I gradually warmed to the family and sympthised with the wife.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars hilarious and heart-warming 28 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Ben Hatch has a fantastic knack of capturing everyday family events with witty observation that strikes a chord with the reader.

I am happily recommending this book to everyone I know who has ever been on a family holiday!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Road to Rouen 28 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you have read his earlier book about his trip around the UK I recommend this one. It may put you off taking a similar trip, or may decide you to copy it, but you are there with the Hatch family all the way. A few times I went past my station on the Underground because I was too engrossed which is the mark of a good read in my books (no pun intended).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly suprised 27 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
I don't normally read travel guides however after being followed by Ben hatch on twitter I thought I better read his book. A very funny book about his own French holiday with a family. It did remind me of childhood holidays in France so I could relate to this book. The funniest bit was the last few chapters about euro Disney just as i imagined it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Laughed out loud! 22 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Laugh out loud funny! Lots of situations to relate to - Smuggling food into Disney had whole family in stitches! Great read, thoroughly recommend!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly engaging 20 Jan 2014
A thoroughly entertaining book,charming and witty, I know it's a cliché but I really could not put it down. I could not recommend it more, and would urge you to read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top read 20 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Great easy reading, anybody who has been through the journey to France with a young family on a self drive holiday can relate, although I follow Ben hatch on twitter it's the first book of his I've read and was not disappointed and will not be the last of his I read either
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars It's okay
Not quite my style
Published 1 day ago by Janspen
5.0 out of 5 stars The best travel book I have ever read
Without doubt the best travel book I have ever read. No hold that. This is one of the best book of any kind I ever read. Always funny and such a heart warming book. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Paul
4.0 out of 5 stars Sacre bleu
This adventures seems the kind of trip most people would like to try but don't have the courage to attempt. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Steve MacBeath
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book
I love Ben Hatch, his books are great including this one.
Published 16 days ago by Jane
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Couldn't get into it abandoned it
Published 23 days ago by jo
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Not quite Peter mayle, but an ok read
Published 1 month ago by bookworm
5.0 out of 5 stars Road to Rouen lined with laughs!
I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Right from the start, the storytelling was poignant and self-deprecating. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Dr. Jones
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Not read it yet
Published 1 month ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Laugh out loud moments
A funny- with many laugh out loud moments- witty and very honest tale of a family's journey from Brighton, through France to Rouen with all it's highs, lows and many adventures and... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Pat O'Meara
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read
I enjoyed this book. very good. real read others by same author
would recommend this book to all my friends
Published 2 months ago by jhm
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