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It's All Greek to Me! A Tale of a Mad Dog and an Englishman, Ruins, Retsina - and Real Greeks Paperback – 1 Jul 2004

4.2 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Nicholas Brealey Publishing (1 July 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857883438
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857883435
  • Product Dimensions: 14.4 x 2.3 x 21.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 663,911 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

A witty fun-filled book which recreates a rustic Greece now rarely found. -- The Greek-o-File

It is the humour of the author John Mole that lifts It's All Greek to Me! above the rest. -- Kathimerini, Greece’s international English language newspaper

It’s All Greek to Me! is a fabulous insight into Hellenic village life. -- Book of the Week, Daily Express

John Mole wirtes with clarity, honesty and humour ... this book offers an entertaining glimpse of life in rural Greece. -- Saga Travellers News

Mole’s affable style suits the subject ... anecdotes come thick and fast... his self-deprecatory tone is a bonus. -- The Good Book Guide

About the Author

John Mole is the author of three novels and two business books including the incredibly successful Mind Your Manners, also published by Nicholas Brealey. He was educated at Oxford University and INSEAD. He can be contacted through his website www johnmole.com


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 17 May 2005
Format: Paperback
As lovers of Greece, we try to find at least one book about the country every time we visit. Last summer we took this book and have never cried so much - with laughter! We have many Greek friends and they will not mind us saying that the eccentricity of the village people is all true, but told with such love, warmth and respect. The Joke is on the author and he is not afraid to share his stupidity with the reader. Our daughters had great empathy with his children; they too have had to experience the fall out from some of their parents stranger efforts to fit in with the community. We cannot recommend this book enough BUT be warned! you get very funny looks from others on beaches, in tavernas and planes as you are helpless with laughter, tears pouring down your face! Strange lot these tourists!
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This is, quite simply, the funniest and most realistic book about an 'in-comer' living in a Greek community. This is how it really is! The struggles, the humour, the peculiarities and friendships. It is a 'warts and all' book. It captures the very essence of what living in Greece is all about. If you have read other peoples accounts of living in a foreign country and felt let down by the stories then BUY THIS BOOK! It will make you laugh out loud.
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Format: Paperback
Reminiscent partly of "My Family and Other Animals" and partly of "A Year in Provence" but infinitely funnier than either, this book tells the story of how John Mole and his family acquired their dream home on the Greek island of Evia.
Acquired is perhaps not the right word. What John actually bought - from a wily and moustachioed butcher called Ajax - was a view of an unspoilt landscape that took the breath away. The only trouble was that the house that went with the view had no roof, practically no floor and a twenty-year accretion of goat dung in which lurked some very undesirable wildlife. The fact that there was no mains water or electricity was almost incidental.
Fortunately, John's indomitable wife Arfa - so-called because, when offered wine, she would want "just half a glass" - was also captivated by the view; she was less enraptured by some of the other features of her new home including the huge snake that crawled from under the stone on which she sat down to eat her picnic lunch. Realising that he had made a bad mistake John set out to ask the vendor for his money back only to find that it had all been spent on a brand new cold-store for the butcher's shop. Too late. Nothing for it but to make the best of things and turn the house into what he would have liked it to be in the first place.
The rest of the book is about that. How the house took shape and with it the family's new life in Evia. Vividly- drawn characters populate this book: John and Arfa's four feisty children, the vampish Antigone who yearns to be a croupier on a cruise ship but ends up marrying a prosperous and middle-aged local builder and Alekos the taxi driver who spent years in Melbourne.
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Format: Paperback
John Mole's account of his family's struggle to set up home in a Greek ruin in the 1960s and 70s provides a hilarious and lavishly drawn portrait of Greek life; the English struggle to fit in; and the perils of both parenthood and DIY.
Full to bursting with anecdotes of varying comic value, this book acts both as warning and temptation to the lover of Greece as Mole persevers in creating his Greek 'idyll'. Engagingly written and affectionately drawn, the efforts of both Brits (downing Ouzo at 10am) and Greeks (turfing a tiny, parched lawn)to behave like 'Europeans' provide an endearing and unfailingly entertaining read.
Perfect for the holidaymaker - particularly those who dream of finding a little Greek idyll of their own - but who may, after reading this book, decide to buy in their rooftiles...
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Format: Paperback
John Mole provides a beautifully observed account of an Englishman comming to grips with rural greek culture. Each chapter illustrates new aspects of the amazing characters that make up the village whilst holding up a mirror to our own cultural peculiarities. It's a book that will put a smile on your face a have you gently chuckling away to yourself as you follow John Moles journey.
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Format: Paperback
As a Greek ex-pat who moved to England nearly 20 years ago I am always very interested in reading books that describe the Greece that I left. Quite often books written by non-Greeks don't get to the heart and soul of the Greece that I knew. Thankfully his book is a glorious exception to this. It is a funny, witty and above all else a warm account of Greece, Greeks and the Greek life. The joy and fun that the author has experienced in Greece shine through in every page. These attributes and well sketched characters are sprinkled with a healthy dose of historical fact and analysis to make this an absolute joy to read and a real page turner. I whizzed through this book in a flurry of laughter and amazement. I'd recommend this as a great introduction to the joys of Greece and for those of us who know Greece better it's a real affirmation of everything that makes Greece such a special and wonderful country.
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