If you discount some work with Rough Guides, then Driving over Lemons was Chris Stewart’s first book, and it’s a cracker! Take an author with an interesting background (First drummer for Genesis, itinerant traveller, sheep shearer and one time circus performer) and drop him with his family into a dilapidated farm in Andalucia and you have all the ingredients for a rib tickling read.

The book covers the purchase of the farm, the painful handover process from the previous owner and the first steps towards settling into the local community. The writing style is irreverent and full of charming anecdotes as Stewart bumbles through life with a distracted grin on his face.One thing that shines through every page is the author’s love of the area, the history and the customs of it’s people. Everything is described vividly and clearly in a way that will allow you to visualize the beauty of the Aplujarran Mountain range.

This was the first book I ever read about Spain that was written by a foreigner, and it’s a must-read if you have any interest in the country. Driving over Lemons is simply brilliant!

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