Driving Over Lemons
A special anniversary edition with an updated chapter set 25 years on by Chris Stewart.
Over two decades ago we set up Sort of Books to help our friend, the some-time Genesis drummer Chris Stewart, bring his sunlit stories of life on a Spanish mountain farm to print. Ever the optimist, Chris hoped to earn enough money to buy a second-hand tractor for his farm. He got his tractor, as the book spent a year on the Sunday Times Top 10 charts and went on to sell a million and a half copies.
His story is a classic. A dreamer and an itinerant sheep shearer, he moves with his wife Ana to a mountain farm in Las Alpujarras, an oddball region in the south of Spain. Misadventures gleefully unfold as Chris discovers that the owner had no intention of leaving. He meets their neighbours, an engaging mix of farmers, shepherds and New Age travellers, and their daughter Chloe is born, linking them irrevocably to their new life. The hero of the piece, however, is the farm itself – a patch of mountain studded with olive, almond and lemon groves, sited on the wrong side of a river, with no access road, water supply or electricity. Could life offer much better than that?
When an author is as modest and humorous as this, his story cannot be told too often. -- Elizabeth Buchan * The Times * Exquisite. In Driving Over Lemons the anecdote flourishes once more. -- Penelope Lively * Daily Telegraph * It is easy to enthuse about the simple pleasures of life, but hard to write about them well. Stewart's gift is to do so with the carefree manner of someone you've just met in a bar, and who is buying the drinks. -- Hugh Thomson * Independent *
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