The Second-Worst Restaurant in France by Alexander McCall Smith

The Second-Worst Restaurant in France

Alexander McCall Smith

Renowned Scottish cookbook writer Paul Stuart is hard at work on his new book and travels to the French countryside to focus. However, as the village becomes more complicated, Paul must call upon all his experience to bring order back.

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In this delightful sequel to the best-selling comedic novel My Italian Bulldozer, Paul Stuart's travels taie him to a French village, where the local restaurant's haute cuisine leaves a lot to be desired.

Renowned Scottish cookbook writer Paul Stuart is hard at work on his new book, The Philosophy of Food, but complicated domestic circumstances, and two clingy cats, are making that difficult.

So when Paul's cousin Chloe suggests that he join her at the house she's rented in the French countryside, he jumps at the chance. The two quickly befriend the locals, including their twin-sister landladies, who also own the infamous local restaurant known to be the second-worst eatery in all of France. During their stay, the restaurant's sole waitress gives birth mid-dinner service and the maitre d' storms off after fighting with the head chef. Paul is soon drafted to improve the gastronomy of the village, which Chloe, ever on the hunt for her next romance, busies herself with distracting the handsome but incompetent chef. Could he be husband number six?

With all this local drama to deal with, Paul finds it next to impossible to focus on his writing, and that's before he learns that Chloe's past is far more complicated than he'd ever imagined. Paul will have to call upon al his experience—with food and with people—to bring order back to the village. And he may just learn something about family—and about himself— along the way.

Advance Galley Reviews

Something different from Alexander McCall Smith, set in a small village in France. The story moved along in a similar manner to the author's "The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency", where you don't realize how much is going on until you get to the end. The main character, Paul, is a good observer, however, I found that I was more interested in his cousin, the mysterious Chloe. The book kept my attention and I hope there are more stories about Paul, Chloe and their sojourn in France.

For me, this was a book that I particularly didn't care for. Not that it is a "bad" book, it's pretty decent. It just didn't hold my interest.


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