Driving Over Lemons: An Optimist in Andalucia (The Lemons Trilogy) Paperback – 4 Jun 2009
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When an author is as modest and humorous as this, his story cannot be told too often. (Elizabeth Buchan The Times)
Exquisite ... in Driving Over Lemons the anecdote flourishes once more. (Penelope Lively Daily Telegraph)
Chris, eternal optimist and itinerant sheep shearer, moves with his wife Ana to a mountain farm in Las Alpujarras, an oddball region in the south of Spain. Misadventures gleefully unfold as Chris discovers that the owner has no intention of leaving and meets their neighbours, an engaging mix of peasant farmers and shepherds, New Age travellers and ex-pats. Their daughter Chloe is born, linking them irrevocably to their new life. The hero of the piece, however, is the farm itself - a patch of mountain studded with olive, almond and lemon groves, sited on the wrong side of a river, with no access road, water supply or electricity.Could life offer much better than that?It's ten years since Sort Of Books launched Chris Stewart's "Driving Over Lemons", the first of his three successful memoirs set in Andalucia. To celebrate this, and joining "Profile in the Faber Alliance" - we are re-issuing Chris' books in gorgeous new 'classic' covers. These will be available with a bonus feature interview/photo special - 'And then what happened?' - to answer everyone's burning questions.See all Product description
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Latest edition updates the reader on the Stewarts life to date - I bought it again because have just bought a place in Spain in an area near to the Stewarts.
He writes so well , simple , easy , flowing , captivated once more - thanks Chris.
An optimist indeed !
Buy , read , enjoy.....Encantado!
Surrounded by a menagerie of animals, eccentric villagers, unpredictable nature, this book really captures the essence of Andalusia.
This book by Chris Stewart is one of the better ones. It is hard to say exactly why; I think his character is the chief reason. Already a fairly laid back, pragmatic person before the move, this allowed him - at least in print - to take everything that the change threw at him and deal with it.
The book has a lot of the usual 'local characters' who seem to populate these books, but most of them do ring true. He also admits that he got one or two character judgements spectacularly wrong along the way. He also errs on the side of seeing himself as needing to understand and work with the locals, whereas in so many of these books, it is the locals who are expected to accept the newcomers without question.
He does introduce one or two innovations to the area, which are generally welcomed - it is other foreign visitors who accuse him of destroying local traditions!
Overall, a well-written account of the start of his adventures; now to read the sequel...
The characters that Chris meets and becomes friends with on his journey in this remote Spanish village are interesting and colourful and many over the years have became part of his extended family.
Chris describes the good and bad parts of farm life, some of which are downright scary, especially when the weather takes a turn for the worse. This book shows that if you have a dream, through determination and handwork you really can make it work.
There's an interview with Chris at the end of the book, again this is very interesting so don't be tempted to skip over it :-)
I'm looking forward to reading the sequel and wish Chris and his family all the best for the future!
Chris Stewart's words reached me so significantly that a year later I specifically made a trip to the region, stayed in Orgiva, and roamed the hills in May for wildflowers and tiny white villages. Perfect.
I look forward to reading Driving Over Lemons again some day, preferably from a sun dappled olive grove in the Alpujarras.