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The Depths of France-bookcover

By: Greg Levitt

The Depths of France

Pages: 180 Ratings: 5.0
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The story explores the lives of a French ‘Yeoman’ farming family and their village, from the beginning of the period of unprecedented prosperity, after World War II until today, in the depths of the French countryside far from any large towns.Through a series of hilarious events the story describes the hardships of their traditional daily life punctuated by the distractions which made their lives enjoyable.The novel revolves around the ‘Fournier’ family who live in the fictitious village of ‘Nuilly’, and in particular their son who becomes a teacher of English and develops a friendship with an English family. Through the Fournier family we also witness their rustic culture embracing hard physical work, milking cows 365 days of the year in winter temperatures as low as -20° Celsius, and their love of good food and wines much of which they produce themselves.Through the visits of their English friends we receive a sympathetic outside appreciation of their lives, but also follow the story of the family's triumphs, followed by sadness, as the family's fortunes decline as a result of financially driven farm expansion followed by a business fraud.The subsequent debt impoverishes the family.However, the son Jean-Luc refuses to leave the village and understands the current demise of rural France through the changes to his own village and its surroundings and he is sustained by memories of Candice, his lost love.

Greg Levitt is seventy-six years old and grew up in Enfield, north London. He attended the Stationers’ Company’s School, Hornsey when it was a voluntary aided grammar school from 1955 until 1962 and went on to St. Luke’s College, Exeter University to be awarded a Certificate in Education and then Birkbeck College, University of London, where he received an Upper Second B.Sc. ‘Special’ degree in 1969, He has also studied history at the OU to master’s standard receiving a post graduate diploma in humanities in 2015.

Greg’s family has had connections with Provence since 1953 and he has had a second home in Provence since 1972. His French friends live in Paris, Champagne, Burgundy and Lyon and, with extensive travel throughout France, form the basis from which his insights into France emanate.

Customer Reviews
2 reviews
2 reviews
  • Jerry Clark

  • Nigel Sommers

    A rare find, this is an insightful story of a French farming family living and surviving In deepest rural France.

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