Listen to an extract and introduction, recorded exclusively for Amazon customers.
The Almond Blossom Appreciation Society
Special Offers and Product Promotions
Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
mightily entertaining.... Stewart makes an excellent reader of his accounts of Spain and life at his far, El Varo, the reading accentuating the self-deprecatory humour, adding considerably to the listener's pleasure. A welcome longer-length recording - five hours - and every minute enjoyed. (Sue Baker PUBLISHING NEWS)
a delight from the off, when he insists on relieving a dung beetle of its dung ball. Why, you ask? Listen on - it's worth it. (Kati Nicholl DAILY EXPRESS)
a highly amusing listen. (Vidar Hjardeng THE BOOK MAGAZINE)
Third book by the best selling author of Driving Over Lemons. Abridged editionSee all Product Description
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
But there is also a serious - and new - strand in this book, which is Morocco, Africa and Fortress Europe. Chris finds himself on the frontline of immigration to Europe when a group of Moroccan youths turn up, en route from a terrible, dangerous crossing of the straits to seeking work in the greenhouses around Almeria. They walk the backroads to avoid detection, and pass by El Valero. Caught up in their plight, Chris goes to work in an advice centre in Granada, and, as you would expect, he is not cut out for office work! He then retraces the immigrants' route, with writer friend Michael Jacobs, but ends up eating more jamon and drinking more wine than is strictly Muslim. It's all described as a self-deprecating farce, but beneath the humour he has a point to make about tolerance. We also get some marvellous descriptions - perhaps the best writing Chris has done in any of his books - about his own time in Morocco, a few years back, scratching a living seed collecting in the Middle Atlas.
All in all, this is another great slice of Stewart and one that remains entirely rooted in 'real life' - very far from the ex-pat ramblings of so many of his imitators. Most important, he remains an irresistibly funny writer, with a voice uniquely his own, and a style of storytelling that is never less than engaging.
Once again, we are treated to a delightful but informative romp through matters that most of us know nothing about - from dung beetles, frogs, dogs, trees, sheep (and their droppings), to olives, Costa wine and the eponymous almond blossom. All this set in the now familiar landscape around El Valero, the family cortijo in the Alpujarras in Southern Spain, at the junction of the rivers Trevelez and Cadiar,
As before we can count on his wife, Ana, and daughter Chloe - now a teenager, to provide quizzical counterpoint to some of his escapades, and on a charming coterie of local characters who accompany him on them.
But times change, and global issues reach even Alpujarreñan backwaters. Semi-starved illegal immigrants from Morocco ghost past his door, and Stewart feeds them, tries to simulate their furtive trek up from the coast. He works as a volunteer in an Immigrant Help centre in Granada. A seed-gathering expedition to Morocco years before is lovingly related, but hopes of helping his Berber helpers to escape their poverty trap ultimately came to nothing.
Climate change arrives with a vengeance. Life in the Alpujarras - always precarious and ever subject to extreme highs and lows, both physical and emotional - suffers unprecedented cold and severe drought. Crops are ruined, trees freeze and sheep risk starvation.Read more ›