Stephen Clarke, author of bestsellers "A Year in the Merde", "Merde Actually" etc, offered ten commandments for understanding the French in this hilarious work of non-fiction.
Clarke, a British journalist who has been living in France for 12 years, obviously has had enough with the French. He dished out his advices to people who plan to travel to, live in or do business with France as a pretext for French-bashing. The first commandment, "Thou shalt be wrong (if you're not French)", sums up his views on the French: that every Frenchman thinks he is right and all the others, be they fellow Frenchmen or their most hated Anglo-Saxons, are wrong. That's why one seldom gets any service in restaurants, shops or post offices in France, French people work short hours and take long holidays, and one must speak French: because the French regard themselves as "Monsieur Right". What they do is always right.
Other commandments like "Thou shalt work", "Thou shalt eat", "Thou shalt not be served", "Thou shalt not love thy neighbour" etc are equally funny and insightful. The book also contains a number of French phrases (with English translation and pronunciation) and advices to help readers survive in France and get what they want, e.g. get the attention of a waiter in a restaurant.
Don't know how the book is received in France. But then, they won't read anything in English anyway ... ils ne comprennent pas Anglais....Continua
This is the book to read if you want to know why you never get served by a French waiter and whether you are on a bonjour or salute or a kissing mode with a gorgeous French woman. It always explains the recent youtube favourite of the French president blasting the technician for not returning a bonjour to him. The writer let you know with humour why French are French and he explains all their idiosyncracies with the usual Anglo-saxon entertaining snub. However, reading between the lines, you know that he is a secret admirer of the French and the French way. It is a most entertaining book I have read for a long time....Continua