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Two dogs and a suitcase: Clueless in Charente (Sarah Jane's Travel Memoir Series Book 2) [Kindle Edition]

Sarah Jane Butfield
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The title says it all: what we have and where we are. This book, the sequel to Glass Half Full: Our Australian Adventure, follows our French exploits as we endeavour to rebuild our lives in another new country, after spending four and half years in Australia. Our goal, or hope for the immediate future, is to focus positively on the present, so that we can start a new, optimistic future back in Europe. Our main aim is to be nearer to the children, leaving the dark clouds of the challenges we faced in Australia as a distant memory. Journey with us as we arrive in rural South West France; enjoy my reflections, thoughts, and observations about my family, our new surroundings, and our lifestyle. Follow the journey of my writing career and how we start our renovation project while managing our convoluted family life. Once again, we will laugh, cry, and enjoy life to the fullest with a generous helping of positive spin thrown in for good measure.


Product Description

About the Author

Author Sarah Jane Butfield was born in Ipswich, and raised in rural Suffolk, England. Fulfilling her childhood dream and becoming a nurse, was just the start of her amazing journey. Her nursing and teaching qualifications would take her around the world, enabling her to work in all fields of nursing, education and management. However, after 27 years as nurse, wife and mother of four children and three step-children, Sarah Jane has now achieved another long held ambition, that of becoming a published author. Glass Half Full: Our Australian adventure is her debut travel memoir, but she is also a published freelance magazine journalist and blogger, in the healthcare and writing arenas. The sequel, Two dogs and a suitcase: Clueless in Charente, has recently been released. In addition to her non-fiction books, she is currently working on a series of self-help books for people facing challenging life events and tough family situations, based on her real life experience of divorce, bereavement, child custody issues, migration, parenting, etc.

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More About the Author

Author Sarah Jane Butfield was born in Ipswich and raised in rural Suffolk, UK. Sarah Jane is a wife, mother, ex-qualified nurse and now an internationally published author. Married three times with four children, three stepchildren and two playful Australian Cattle dogs she an experienced modern day mum to her 'Brady bunch', but she loves every minute of their convoluted lives. Sarah Jane loves to connect with her readers so feel free to connect on Twitter @SarahJanewrites or Facebook at www.facebook.com/AuthorSarahJaneButfield or www.facebook.com/Twodogsandasuitcase www.facebook.com/OurFrugalSummerinCharente

Sarah Jane, the roving Florence Nightingale, fulfilled her childhood dream of becoming a nurse and went on to use her nursing and later teaching qualifications to take her around the world. She is now an international best selling author of three travel memoirs set in Australia and France. In addition, she will be releasing the first in a series of books titled The Accidental Author for aspiring and debut self published authors in early 2015.

Glass Half Full: Our Australian Adventure, her debut travel memoir, and the sequel Two dogs and a suitcase: Clueless in Charente, are regularly found high in the Amazon rankings. Categories include Parenting, Grief, Christian faith, Step-parenting, Travel and France. Her new release Our Frugal Summer in Charente promises to be just as entertaining.

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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 Charming insight. 9 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
I have to say that I simply loved this book. Being a fan of programs like Grand Designs, I have always wondered what it would be like to renovate and live in a house in the countryside somewhere. It is a nice thought but I don't know whether I would have the courage to actually do it.

I really enjoyed reading about Sarah and her husband's adventures in France. In my opinion it takes real guts to do what Sarah did. For most of us this would be a dream and not a reality. The fact that she did it on a very restricted budget shows how much she wanted it. I found the book such an easy and entertaining read. The authors initial attempts to engage with the locals made me smile. I could picture everything in my head.

Thank you for sharing your adventure with us. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is the second of Sarah's books that I have had the pleasure and privilege to read. It continues her tale of her life and the lives of her immediate family. This is not a sugar coated view from the beautiful countryside of rural France. Rather, it is an honest and forthright account of the difficulties and challenges faced by a couple who set off, with nothing but a suitcase and their two dogs, to pursue their dream. It tells of hardship and heartbreak, of desperation and despair; but it also reveals what can be achieved by courage, determination and faith. There is plenty in there to lighten your heart and bring you joy, as well as passages to treasure and points to ponder.
It is difficult to put this book into one category. If you are inspired to move to France, read this for its cautionary tales of Sarah and Nigel's experiences. If you want an idea of the charm this part of France can hold for the visitor, that's there too, not to forget the recipes for meals on a shoestring! Most importantly, if you are like me, you will read this and feel humble in the face of such courage and optimism in the face of adversity. Sarah and Nigel are clearly an amazing couple.
Many of us dream of moving to pastures new, where we imagine an idyllic life awaits us. Sarah and Nigel did more than that, they followed that dream. Have they achieved it? That remains to be seen, for this is an account of work in progress.
I, for one, can't wait for the next book. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring 17 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I first read glass half full which left me with such a sense of adventure, I had to then buy this one straight away as I couldn't help but feel so involved in Sarah's journey I needed to know what would happen next. I couldn't put it down, I enjoyed reading about how they began their life in France from their first night sleeping on flat air beds to racing to pick up their boxes from Australia to reunions with their family. I loved every minute of it. I would love to read a sequel in a couple of years to see where life has taken them. It has reminded me to not think too materialistically and to follow and believe in dreams, while holding tight to family values and love.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two Dogs and a Suitcase! 19 Feb. 2015
By brenda
Format:Kindle Edition
"The truth is that there is often no one particular solution to life's challenges, sometimes there is no solution just resolution."

Two Dogs and a Suitcase: Clueless in Charente by Sarah Jane Butfield is a perky escape. Insightful, telling and full of real life emotion. An honest memoir that at times was emotional and yet entertaining.

This is an uplifting tale that I loved cozying into. This book took me to an entirely different place and I felt I could see the beautiful landscape all around me. Inspired me and made me yearn to travel to that part of the world. The exhaustible task of starting over in a new county is a daunting thought. These people took on their projects with passion and great ambition. They make this quite brutal renovation work with each other and their two dogs with great love and fortitude. I am in awe of their commitment and strength. Beautiful story!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 20 Jan. 2015
By ChristophFischerBooks TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"Two dogs and a suitcase: Clueless in Charente (Sarah Jane's Travel Memoir Series Book 2)" by Sarah Jane Butfield is a beautifully written book. Many of us have dreams to live abroad and the author not only did it, but she shared her memories and experiences in a very enjoyable way.
I haven't read the first part of her travel memoir series but that isn't essential. If you wonder what it is like to live and renovate a house in France then this is the book for you. Plenty of fascinating anecdotes and a very reflective and at times philosophical perspective made this so much more than just a re-telling of what has happened to her and her family.
Combining popular themes, such as house design and travelling, this book hit the right spot for me.
Very recommendable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two dogs and a suitcase; Clueless in Charente 21 Jun. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
WOW!! I did so enjoy this book from the first page like all those I have read by We Love Memoir authors!
I always love stories about France as I love the country even though I live in Spain!
The trials and tribulations of renovating an old house and dealing with life as an Ex-pat is dealt with brilliantly!
The bit about Oradour I loved as I have also visited this place with my husband and it is a place to see to remind us of the evil that can be done by humanity to humanity!!
An excellent read and well worth buying, couldn't put it down and when I did the minute I sat down I had my kindle out reading!!! Well done Sarah, keep writing!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Rambling and confusing
I had high expectations of this book, but I found it confusing and poorly written. I expected a story about their life in Charente, and instead had chapters about her daughter's... Read more
Published 1 day ago by monty425
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book
Enjoyed reading this book
Published 1 month ago by Mrs M Hayes
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book. I have read both of her books ...
Brilliant book. I have read both of her books and they are easy to read, intelligent and keep you enthralled. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Winter3110
4.0 out of 5 stars interesting books
Both books are an enjoyable read.The author's honesty regarding moving to France and the renovations to a property is refreshing. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Gwyneth Holley
2.0 out of 5 stars Self-indulgent
I quite enjoyed the first half, but then this book became increasingly self-indulgent, repetitive and annoying. Read more
Published 3 months ago by susan cooper
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant absolutely gripping French adventure
Brilliant absolutely gripping French adventure. The only thing that let it down was the recipes which I understand she is incorporating in a book. Read more
Published 3 months ago by waveney connolly
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
An interesting journey, but not particularly well written
Published 4 months ago by Penny Foster
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiration!
Having read Sarah Jane's Glass half full and enjoying it immensely,I felt inspired and in awe of her achievements,so to read Clueless in Charente was as I thought an amazing... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Bridog06
2.0 out of 5 stars boring good job it was short
more of an advertisement for the other book about her Australian life, boring good job it was short.
Published 4 months ago by Mrs F
4.0 out of 5 stars great book
Great book. Author makes you feel you are there with them , great insight into the real country look forward to next book
Published 4 months ago by J. M. Exton
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