The French House

An American Family, a Ruined Maison, and the Village That Restored Them All

By Don Wallace
(Sourcebooks, Paperback, 9781402293313, 325pp.)

Publication Date: June 1, 2014

List Price: $14.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.
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Description

"On a tiny French island, a couple of American dreamers redefine their lives by restoring a ruin--which in this lovely, shimmering story becomes a parable of a saner, greener, more sustainable path that we all can follow if we will but listen to the wisdom of the villagers the way the Wallaces did. The French House moves to a soulful, very funny rhythm all its own."--Meryl Streep

"A brave, insightful, and very amusing memoir about a fantasy that many of us have had but not dared to attempt."--Jane Smiley

When life hands you lemons, make citron presse.

Shortly after Don and Mindy Wallace move to Manhattan to jump-start their writing careers, they learn of a house for sale in a village they once visited on a tiny French island off the Brittany coast. Desperate for a life change, the Wallaces bravely (and impulsively) buy it almost sight unseen.

What they find when they arrive is a ruin, and it isn't long before their lives begin to resemble it--with hilarious and heartwarming results.

Redolent with the beauty and flavors of French country life, The French House is a lively, inspiring, and irresistibly charming memoir of a family that rises from the rubble, wins the hearts of a historic village, and finally finds the home they've been seeking off the wild coast of France.

"Don Wallace has crafted a delicious French bonbon of a book...full of humor, hope, and lessons on how to live a life full of meaning."--Dani Shapiro, bestselling author of Devotion and Still Writing

"The French House isn't a memoir. It's a vacation. Charming, gorgeous, perceptive, it is peppered with unforgettable characters and steeped in the deep red wine of long-term friendship, showing us how a remarkable place can make a life worth living."--Jennie Fields, author of The Age of Desire.




About the Author
Don Wallace is an award-winning journalist, novelist, and editor who has written for "Harper's, The New York Times, " and dozens of other publications. His honors include being named the U.S. Naval Institute's 2002 Author of the Year for his serialized novel, "The Log of Matthew Roving"; a Roll of Honor selection of the 1998 Best American Essays for ""While Watts Burned";" and a Michener Prize from the Copernicus Society for his 1991 novel, "Hot Water." Wallace attended the Iowa Writers Workshop, U.C. Santa Cruz, and Poly High School, where he was the third generation of Wallaces to play varsity football. He lives in New York City with his wife and son.
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