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A Year in the Merde

A Year in the Merde Based on Stephen Clarke s own experiences and with names changed to avoid embarrassment possible legal action and to prevent the author s legs being broken by someone in a Yves Saint Laurent suit A

  • Title: A Year in the Merde
  • Author: Stephen Clarke
  • ISBN: 9781582346175
  • Page: 415
  • Format: Paperback
  • Based on Stephen Clarke s own experiences and with names changed to avoid embarrassment, possible legal action, and to prevent the author s legs being broken by someone in a Yves Saint Laurent suit, A Year in the Merde provides perfect entertainment for Francophiles and Francophobes alike.

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      Posted by:Stephen Clarke
      Published :2018-05-13T03:59:35+00:00

    1 thought on “A Year in the Merde

    1. This started off so promisingly with snarky but charming British banter about France's little annoying idiosyncrasies that anyone who has spent any time in France can appreciate. The main character, a British twenty-something, chronicles his year living in France while working for a corrupt corporate sleaze bag who wants help marketing tea rooms in Paris. It turns out that the main character is also a sleaze bag AND a "whinge cow" as he so aptly dubs whiners. By the month of February I was so si [...]

    2. You know what? I'm a French woman and apparently I lack a sense of humour.See, I can admit that we French are far from perfect (that's an understatement, really), and everything isn't false in this. But silly me, I didn't expect this to be such a big fuckery. Because there's only so many misogynists's craps I can take, and if I read another sentence implying that French women are sluts (and teases, I almost forgot) and/or a description of cleavage I'm gonna lose it.That's why even if I don't usu [...]

    3. Never been to France? Never plan to go? If you want a truly insulting, xenophobic experience of "French Culture" then read this book. Otherwise, you could run into the middle of the Champs Elysées and scream in your most loud, incomprehensible, slang English, "I THINK THIS COUNTRY SUCKS BUT I'D PREFER TO BE HERE INSULTING THE MOST STEREOTYPICAL CLICHES AT THE TOP OF MY LUNGS RATHER THAN BACK AT HOME WHERE EVERYTHING IS ORDINARY AND BORING."If you like it better at home, then go home.

    4. I picked this up in the train station at Charles de Gaulle airport a few minutes before my flight was cancelled and I was forced to spend another day in Paris, almost a year ago. Tough life, right?I never read it, though.Don't know why, but last week I felt an urge to pick it up. Read it in about 26 hours, couldn't put it down.If you have no knowledge of the French, France, or French it might not be terribly interesting. If, however, you've spent a significant portion of your life dealing with, [...]

    5. This book inspired me to create a new bookshelf entitled: "not worth finishing". I RARELY start a book and don't finish itd it was probably just my mind set of having several other books I preferred to read over this oned the fact that this was a library book that I needed to return. Maybe if I were to give it another chance at some point I would feel differently.Typically if I have a library book that is approaching the deadline, I will just sit down and bust through it. But, I just didn't care [...]

    6. UPDATE: This book was one of the worse ones I've read recently. Not much humor and the attempts at it are pathetic. To be fair, I did quit halfway through, but the misogyny just got to be too much. I did get some good tips on ordering at a French cafe, however.I picked up the French translation of this book at the airport in Paris two days ago (titled "God Save La France," for some reason). It's the story of a 20-something Brit, who doesn't speak much French, working in Paris for a year. I'm rea [...]

    7. This book is one of the best friends I have met recently. One of those friends you need because only they really understand you. It is really funny and an very accurate portrait of French goofiness. I don't know how funny it would be to most people, but being an expat living in Paris, it is tear inducing funny. Just when you think you are alone floating in the french sea, something like this comes along and makes you realize you aren't alone. I can't wait to read his other books.

    8. This book is highly readable, the kind of thing that one could read from start to finish if one just had a few hours with nothing to do. However, this is the most positive thing I can say about this book. It's supposed be one of those screwball accounts of someone living in a foreign culture and the wacky mishaps he experiences, but mostly it's about a relatively uninteresting Englishman who tries much too hard at being funny, and who simply didn't bother to find out anything at all about how Fr [...]

    9. Zanimljiva digresija za početak – u jednoj čitateljskoj grupi na Facebooku pitanje: S obzirom na knjigu koju čitate, gdje se trenutno nalazite? Došlo mi da kao iz topa izvalim „u govnima“, ali, pristojna kakva jesam, odgovorih „U Parizu.“Stephen Clarke nas u ovu knjigu uvodi (nazivajući to „ozbiljnom komedijom“) mnogim usporedbama tipa „Hermesova kravata je tako nabijena energijom da bi mogla pokretati cijeli pariški metro kad bi ga priključili na nju“ ili „Arondismani [...]

    10. I couldn't help myself; this book absolutely cracked me up. That may be because the author's descriptions of countless strikes by trash collectors, public transportation workers, police officers, and journalists brought back fond memories of my own stay in France--during which I also stepped in a fair amount of merde. The audiobook was particularly good, with the dramatist's illustraions of the countless miscommunications between francophones and anglophones. The story line is about Paul West, a [...]

    11. I read this book at the airport on my way home from france and i couldn't stop laughing's very clever, and extremelly laugh out loud funny.

    12. A YEAR IN THE MERDE is the almost-true account of the author’s adventures as an expat in Paris. Based loosely on his own experiences and with names changed to “avoid embarrassment, possible legal action and to prevent the author’s legs being broken by someone in a Yves Saint Laurent suit (or quite possibly, a Christian Dior skirt), ” A YEAR IN THE MERDE is the story of a Paul West, a 27-year-old Brit who is brought to Paris by a French company to open a chain of British “tea rooms.” [...]

    13. This was painful and horrible on so many levels that I don't even know where to start.While in general I enjoy "culture-shock" books, particularly those involving France or other francophone countries, I just couldn't bring myself to finish this one. Reading it past the first few pages soon became almost physically painful and I finally gave up somewhere half-way through. But I tried, because so many people claimed it would be funny. Well, it wasn't. Maybe if the main character wasn't a stuck-up [...]

    14. With the British sense of humour, Paul - the main character - tells his story during a year working (or "working") in France, through which a laughable, indifferent and "merdeuse" (for "life" is feminine) French life is depicted. Sarcasm is on every single page. It makes me laugh internally out loud.I'll definitely have to buy the sequel "In The Merde For Love."And yes, one of the best books I've read this year.

    15. A whimsical book on a Brit living in Paris. There are three themes in this story. The satire of an Englishman adjusting to Parisian life with a country house thrown in, his amorous adventures with libidinous young women, and an intrigue of sordid business and political deals.The first one – the satire worked well and kept me reading. There are equally amusing observations on French and British life. The other two areas – the amorous encounters and the intrigue were less successful and seemed [...]

    16. The year begins in September as a young Brit begins work for a Parisian firm starting up a chain of English tea rooms. Paul West, a lightly disguised stand in for the author, grates at first: a typical boorish lout leching about on the continent. By the end of the year (in May of course) he's somewhat redeemed, still boorish but with a hard won start on understanding the ways of the small circle of Parisians he encounters. If you canstand Paul then this is a light and cartoonish way to get up to [...]

    17. So, I initially started reading this for the "travel memoir" task in the Read Harder challenge and then about halfway through I realized it wasn't a memoir. There were two things that tipped me off:1. The name of the main character wasn't the name of the author2. The intrigue started to get a bit too intense and stretched the limits of credulity.As a person who has spent time as an expat in a country where I don't know the language, I could relate to a lot of Paul's troubles and complaints. Yeah [...]

    18. Keď "ťažké" čítanie chcete niečim odľahčiťNo dobre, nebol najlepší nápad popri Malom živote čítať túto knihu.Čítať túto knihu všeobecne nie je dobrý nápad. Je to takmer strata času.Vygradovaným sarkazmom presýtená kniha. Čítajte jedine vtedy, ak chcete vedieť ako si v Paríži objednať kávu bez toho, aby čašník poznal že ste turista .

    19. I read this book about a month and a half into my trip to Paris. It was a welcome respite from the guidebooks, intellectual culinary reviews, and other literature, all exhibiting "rose-colored glasses" language used to describe Paris ad nauseam. Well okay instead of saying it was a "breath of fresh air," it might be more along the lines of a "fresh burst of flatulence in a crowded elevator."First of all, let's get one thing straight about Clarke's writing abilities. It did not surprise me when I [...]

    20. Hilarious but also really intelligently put together. If you're looking for an idealized, dream version of an expats year in France, this ain't it. But if you have even a slight knowledge of Parisian life and culture, this book is wonderful. Some reviewers said they found it too mean and insulting, but I dont think the author hates the French. In fact, in the end his character remains in Paris. this is really a book about learning to navigate a very complex, highly developed, very subtle and ver [...]

    21. Well, after living three years in a French-speaking multicultural environment heavily influenced by the French style, i ve found this book extreme funny and absolutely worth of reading. it s very easy to digest book since the writer is not worried to show off some excellence in literature. it would be even funnier if you ve ever suffered from French in your life. i strongly recommend this book to those who are interested in French way of living.

    22. Oh goodness, this book was super hilarious. I hope the others in the series are just as funny. I travel a lot too, and it's always a blast putting yourself in new cultures.

    23. I think every traveler to France (no matter how competent they THINK they are in the language) experiences at least some of the things that Clarke recounts in this travel memoir. And depending on how traumatizing the experience ultimately was, we let our friends and family hear all about it when we get home. But few of us tell it all via the dry wit that Clarke consistently exhibits in A Year in the Merde. I actually lost count of how many times I laughed out loud.This one is great fun for those [...]

    24. Mir ist nicht klar, wie dieses Buch an so gute Kritiken kommt. Letztendlich ist es eine Mischung aus Bettgeschichten und Niedermachen der Franzosen. Vieles ist völlig daneben (nicht ironisch übertrieben, sondern offensichtlich nicht verstanden), und etliche der vermutlichen Witze laufen ins Leere. Da habe ich schon sehr viel bessere Bücher über Länder und Kulturen gelesen, die tatsächlich lustig waren. Stephen Clarke ist eher peinlich. Den zweiten Stern gibt es für einige lichte Momente, [...]

    25. This book was a riot to read. Some of it is literally "laugh out loud" and other parts are more of the smirk and giggle. The hero or anti-hero of the story is Paul West (or Paul Vest as some of the French say). He is a 27 year old Brit who was hired by a French food company to create a string of English tea rooms.It seems the French really do like all things British, including the English language, even though outwardly they complain about it all. Paul was hired by the CEO of the French company [...]

    26. I was browsing some titles in a bookshop and suddenly I found this book. How great, I thought, because as a student of the French language, I am more or less compelled to buy anything related to France. So I scanned it and bought it immediately. I should have known however that what I have before me is a bit of a crap, hence the title.The main reason that I bought it is that I want to be familiarized with French culture. The Parisian culture to be exact. But, as the author is British and given t [...]

    27. This review was written for 'The Review Diaries'. To read the full review please go to the site: reviewdiaries/2014I’ve read a few other books by Stephen Clarke and really loved them; his writing is eloquent and frequently laugh out loud funny, and he tackles his subjects with both wit and an obvious deep love of the country and culture that he is writing about. It’s just a shame that he didn’t bring any of that to ‘A Year in the Merde.’When I picked it up I didn’t realise it was a n [...]

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