Absolutely loved this book. Tried to read slowly to make it last and savour it a bit longer. Along with other fans of Beth Haslam books, I couldn’t wait for this, the third book in the series. In Fat Dogs & French Estates Books 1 & 2 Beth takes us on the journey throughout France while her and her husband Jack look for a suitable domaine to purchase. In this book, they’ve found the near perfect domaine of Le Palizac and although the land and forests on the domaine are exactly what they wanted, the properties in situ need a lot of rescuing, renovating and tender loving care to make them safe and habitable. They are inhabited by all manner of creature from the loir (a small rat like rodent) to various kinds of harmless snakes much to Beth’s horror who is frequently scared witless by them all.
Jack, the other half of the couple is a former company chief who has an aversion to any kind of small-talk and very little patience for anything else. Think of a funnier and wittier Victor Meldrew and that sounds about right.
The artisans and builders who help the couple are eccentric and sometimes unreliable, but two in particular are skilled craftsmen and do an excellent job. The problem builder is an Englishman called Bob, who claims to be a qualified carpenter with years of experience, yet his shoddy workmanship causes numerous problems.
Beth has a fantastic sense of humour and oodles of patience as she copes with all of the drama and looks after her two dogs Sam and Biff, the Fat Dogs element of the books.
Now I’m bereft that I’m up to date with the whole series and have to wait for Fat Dogs and French Dogs IV!