My review today is for French Impressions: The Dordogne River: from source to sea by George East, a travel memoir of a road trip along the River Dordogne.
I have read some, but not yet all, of George’s other France based memoirs and they always make me laugh, so I was delighted to find this one just before setting off on our own French road trip that (as luck would have it) will include some of the Dordogne. I was not disappointed; this book had me crying with laughter more than once thanks to his original and often hilarious ways of recounting the things he has noticed or his descriptions of the people he has met. He was so honest about his experiences it was refreshing. I’m glad we are not the only ones to have done a spin of a car park, realised that no matter how beautiful this particular Plus Beaux Village is, it is sadly too busy for us see more than a drive by glance. Welcome to the real France that some guidebooks gloss over!
In this book, George and his wife visit the main tourist attractions from the source of the river in the Auvergne to Blaye on the Atlantic coast, often taking the back roads, sometimes following signs to small detours, occasionally getting lost, but always enjoying their journey. Some establishments they find to eat or stay a night in are warm and welcoming, others not so, but all are described with humour. Some of the places he writes about were familiar to me and I really enjoyed revisiting them with him, others were new and George certainly whet my appetite for a road trip and gave me quite a few places to add to my ‘must see’ list. With a combination of interesting facts and funny stories, from this trip and previous ones, he has the ability to simultaneously inform and entertain his readers throughout the journey.
This book would be perfect for anyone who enjoys humorous memoirs about travelling in France and should be a must read for anyone planning a holiday in the Auvergne, Limousin, Midi-Pyrénées, Poitou-Charentes or Aquitaine regions.
French Impressions: The Dordogne River: from source to sea and George’s other books are all available in paperback and ebook format from Amazon and all good book shops.