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on 24 March 2018
Having seen and really enjoyed the Russell Crowe movie of the same name first, I was really looking forward to reading this book. I had liked Mayle's 'A Year in Provence' and I was fully prepared for a wonderfully laid back, relaxed insight into the unique French lifestyle. I wasn't disappointed - the book was everything it had promised, but unusually, I felt that the movie offered a much better version of the story than the book did. The book was a simple read that missed opportunities to expand on the story line. In contrast, the movie made a few changes to the original Mayle story that actually seemed to work a whole lot better.
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on 4 October 2015
This book was the basis of the later film, featuring Russell Crowe. The book, as one would expect, follows a slightly different storyline, with a twist to add to the twist featured in the film. One can see how the characters in the book provided the inspiration for those in the film. In both cases, they are great and work well in the context of the book and film. This book is great fun, definitely Peter Mayle's best writing, and it reveals (as his other books do) his sincere love of the Luberon. Those who love wine will find that there is a delicious Bordeaux called Les Griffons, but if they want to taste the wine from the Château featured in the book and film, then they really can - its Château la Canorgue, and the rosé is particularly delicious. If you've seen the film and loved it, you will still find the book a great, enjoyable read.
One person found this helpful
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on 16 August 2013
Peter Mayle isn't a great writer, but he does write well, his work flows nicely and has a good rhythm to it, I think. A Good Year is a light, frivolous read that's easy, whimsical and sometimes funny, a book in which nothing dangerous/serious/scary is going to happen. It doesn't have convoluted plots and sub-plots. One of the reviewers suggests it's an ideal book to read on the sun lounger or some such, on a summer's day and with a glass of wine. Spot on. It's pure escapism and a 'feel good' read. If you want stronger stuff, don't buy this book. I loved it and have read it several times. I marginally prefer the film of the book, which has some changes that fit the film mode of entertainment better.
3 people found this helpful
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on 27 August 2017
Lovely escapist read. Ok, it's never going to be a GCSE text, but they can't all be. Mayle has a light touch which brings the south of France to life without becoming a worthy travelogue. It is what it is, pure entertainment and none the worse for it.
One person found this helpful
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on 25 September 2012
As I've said before, I really fancy retiring to the South of France. The lifestyle, the land and house with pool, oh and course the weather, I guess this has been my daydream for several years. To put flesh on these bones, I've enjoyed reading about other peoples experiences, good and bad.

Although Peter Mayles a bit of a "celeb" and writes accordingly, I nevertheless very much enjoyed his experiences in Provence, starting with 'A Good Year' which I first came across in the film adaptation and found very enjoyable, in fact I've watched it twice. Whatever your motivation it's really worth a read and come to think of it the films well worth a look, although I should point out that the script is adapted, so it tends to be quite a different experience. Personally, I enjoyed both.
2 people found this helpful
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 27 December 2013
I've seen this film I don't know how many times. I've got the DVD, the CD of the soundtrack, and now the book. A lovely light hearted story that Peter Mayle is famous for, with descriptions of the beautiful French countryside, which is always an added bonus for me.
4 people found this helpful
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on 20 January 2014
Bought the book after seeing the film which I loved. True - the book is somewhat different but it did not bother me. I don't necessarily understand people who want both book and film to be a replica image. I think both author and producer are artists and surely the latter can be granted some poetic licence!? I would rather call it interpretation/ imagination.
2 people found this helpful
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on 27 August 2016
The notes on the film said the film was loosely based on the book. That was good enough for me. So the characters in the book are recognisable, but the quality of the book which caught the notice of the film makers shines through. A lovely read.
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on 28 April 2018
A fun novel that brings back good memories of life in France. Audible reading is a bit cliche though, but still fun.
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on 26 September 2016
I know that reading a book upon which a film is based is not always a good thing to do. I've seen the film a few times and I like it very much so I was looking forward to reading the book. I enjoyed it but the part where Max investigates who's buying his wine from his "illegal" vineyard spoilt it for me. I thought it a bit too comedic and implausible. I would rather the story concentrated on him developing his relationships with the other characters and how he fitted into Provencal life.
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