The third and in my opinion best book in the series describing the "goings on" in a small French commune. It's definitely better to read the series in order because you get to meet the characters in turn and really feel you get to know them! I tried really hard to limit myself to 3 chapters a day, but by the end I couldn't hold on - the drama overtook me and I finished it in a week!Really really enjoyed the book and the series, and would highly recommend, especially to anyone who loves France.Am now just waiting for the 4th...........!!
In The French Postmistress, the third book in the Fogas Chronicles by Julia Stagg, the focus shifts to Véronique, the postmistress, and her frustration at the speed the reopening of the village post office is moving at. She is full of ideas to keep the service at the heart of the community, but is anyone there to listen and support her? Fogas is, as usual, a busy little place and with the controversial government plans to reintroduce bears to the mountains things in the community get even more heated and divided than normal. All the characters we have met in the two previous books L'Auberge and The Parisian's Return are back, plus a few new ones to throw some spice and spanners into village life. The Mayor, Serge, is still grieving for his wife and seems to have lost interest in village politics, but maybe there is someone who can put the fire back in his belly. There is also a special guest appearance by The Tour de France that provides the villagers with a welcome distraction.
I am a teeny, tiny bit of a HUGE Julia Stagg fan, so was very excited to be sent a copy of this book by the publishers and return to the mountain village I feel I know so well. Julia lived in the Pyrenees region that she writes about for many years and you can feel her obvious love for the area in her writing.
It was so good to be back in Fogas, the twists and turns of the mountain roads felt familiar, Julia's scenery descriptions bring the pages to life and her little village community has truly captured me. Her writing is such that at many times since reading it, something I've seen or somewhere I've been has triggered my brain into transporting me to Fogas and wondering (as you do with friends you meet on holiday) what everyone is getting up to at the moment. I can't wait for book number four that rumour has will be out sometime next year.
If you like books set in rural France you will love following the life of the villagers in Fogas.
The third book about village life in the Pyrenees. I have read all 3 books one after the other. After reding L'Auberge, the first book in the trilogy i just wanted more. It is best i think to read L'Auberge and The Epicerie before reading the Postmistress so that you become familliar withe the beautiful setting and and the colourful characters that make up the village of Fogas in the Pyrenees. (Fogas of course being purely fictional!) As the pages unfold you are transported to the village and are priveliged to be part of its gossip, scheming, politics and romances. A beautiful Trilogy of stories, well observed, well written and wonderfully crafted to keep you on the egde of you seat one moment and laughing out loud in others. These stories would make a brilliant t.v series. I for one cannot wait for the next book!
I have thoroughly enjoyed this adventure into the French Pyrenees. I feel like one of the community now that I have read all three of these books, there are so many lovely characters. This book has two story lines running through it, you can imagine the Postmistress and her Mother being typically loud, arm waving, French women and getting drawn into their lives quite unintentionally. I also liked that Official Bear Man his story is not what you expect and is all the more enjoyable because of it. I can't wait for the next installment as I feel quite lost without the commune to read about.
The French Postmistress is the third book in the Fogas series from Julia Stagg following L'Auberge and The Parisian's Return and although it probably is best to rest the other two books first to familiarise yourself with the town's colourful characters it can be read as a standalone as I did.
Veronique is pretty frustrated at the length of time and bureaucracy that it is taking to get approval to reopen the village post office had been destroyed in a fire but, with mayor Serge still mourning his wife Therese and deputy Christian worrying about saving his farm, it looks like she'll have to fight this battle on her own.
The villagers of Fogas have other things on their mind with the introduction of wild bears into the neighbouring mountains and it would seem that this is a decision that has split the town in two... those for and those against. Add to the mix a villain with devious plans for Fogas, the introduction of a handsome stranger, an unrequited love story and even a brief appearance by the Tour de France, and life is certainly going to be interesting for them all!
Yes I will admit there were a couple of times whilst reading that I was a little lost about what was going on as there were mentions of things that had obviously taken place in the previous books but on the whole it was not an issue that I didn't know who's who in the village as I was able to pick this up whilst reading this book.
The descriptive writing of the village in the heart of the Pyrenees, surrounding area and its residents appealed to me as the sort of place that I would love to live myself one day...I just need a lottery win first!
The French Postmistress is the third of Julia Stagg's novels set in a small commune called Fogas, situated in the French Pyrenees; following on from L'Auberge (May 2011), and The Parisian's Return (April 2012) - published by Hodder Books.
I haven't read either of the first two stories, and on reflection, I think it's probably best to read them before The French Postmistress. Although this novel stands alone very well, I did struggle at times during the first third of the book to tie up each of the characters - I guess that this wouldn't have happened had I been more familiar with the setting and the characters. Nevertheless, I did enjoy this tale of rural France, the small town politics, the interwoven relationships and most of all, the beautifully described French countryside.
Julia Stagg writes with confidence, as she should and is entitled to, having spent many years herself in the very region that she writes about. There is a darkness that pervades her story of relationships and community, with sinister goings on that are preventing Veronique - the Postmistress in the title, of achieving her aim of rebuilding the post office.
Love and romance - politics - bears, and a bull! Written with flair and a touch of humour, this is a novel that will please fans of Joanne Harris, and everyone else who likes a bit of oh la la now and again!