Mayle the Foodie

I’ve been conditioned by the propaganda: Cheese is bad for you, the sun is bad
for you, and don’t even think about alcohol or tobacco. Remarkable how the
French manage to survive to a ripe old age, isn’t it? They must be doing
something right.

I’m reading a fun book by Peter Mayle who always includes luscious descriptions of food, usually French, in his books. My book club and I have discussed what to call books which fall between beach books and literature — and this is an example. Well-turned sentences, no dumbed-down vocabulary, active plot, and memorable characters. The novel is Chasing Cezanne; Mayle’s better known book is A Year in Provence. What do you term books that aren’t trashy like the typical beach book but that won’t be required reading in literature class either?

One comment

  • Anonymous
    February 22, 2008 - 8:45 am | Permalink

    The answer might be “a good read”. A well-written book is always fun to read and Mayle is a good writer. When he writes a sentence about food you can almost taste it. A lot of books fall between beach book and literature and are worth reading.

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