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Download A Year in the World: Journeys of A Passionate Traveller Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample A Year in the World: Journeys of A Passionate Traveller, by Frances Mayes Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,562 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Frances Mayes Narrator: Frances Mayes Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2006 ISBN: 9780739324639
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The author who unforgettably captured the experience of starting a new life in Tuscany in bestselling travel memoirs expands her horizons to immerse herself—and her readers—in the sights, aromas, and treasures of twelve new special places.

A Year in the World is vintage Frances Mayes—a celebration of the allure of travel, of serendipitous pleasures found in unlikely locales, of memory woven into the present, and of a joyous sense of quest. An ideal travel companion, Frances Mayes brings to the page the curiosity of an intrepid explorer, remarkable insights into the wonder of the everyday, and a compelling narrative style that entertains as it informs.

With her beloved Tuscany as a home base, Mayes travels to Spain, Portugal, France, the British Isles, and to the Mediterranean world of Turkey, Greece, the South of Italy, and North Africa. In Andalucía, she relishes the intersection of cultures. She cooks in Portugal, gathers ideas in the gardens of England and Scotland, takes a literary pilgrimage to Burgundy, discovers an ideal place to live in Mantova, and explores the essential Moroccan city of Fez. She rents houses among ordinary residents, shops at neighborhood markets, wanders the back streets, and everywhere contemplates the concept of home. While in Greece, she follows the classic Homeric voyage across the Aegean, lives in a bougainvillea-draped stone house in Crete, and then drives deep into the Mani. In Turkey with friends, she sails the ancient coast, hiking to archaeological sites, and snorkeling over sunken Byzantine towns. Weaving together personal perceptions and informed commentary on art, architecture, history, landscape, and social and culinary traditions of each area, Mayes brings the immediacy of life in her temporary homes to the reader. An illuminating and passionate book that will be savored by all who loved Under the Tuscan Sun, A Year in the World is travel writing at its peak.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Those who want to find parts of themselves they didn’t know existed, take risks, have an adventure . . . and discover another culture altogether, with its different rhythms, tastes, smells, and ways of being human—those readers will find in Mayes a kindly, eager, tough-spirited guide. Houston Chronicle
  • Mayes is a master at capturing a solid sense of place through her lush, poetic narratives. Orlando Sentinel
  • It’s easy to understand why Mayes has become a kind of cult figure for seekers of The Good Life. She not only inspires us to seize the moment, sip the wine, and smell the roses, she also makes us feel it is quite possible to transform our lives, just as she did.”
  • Lexington Herald-Leader
  • “Mayes displays a gift for conveying everyday life through her writing . . . and presents a simpler, less frantic version of how to live one’s life. USA Today
  • “Frances Mayes is, before all else, a wonderful writer. Chicago Tribune

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kelsey | 2/14/2014

    " 100% condescending rich white lady writing 75% of the time. But food, so much food. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robin | 2/5/2014

    " I bought this a long time ago and was looking forward to finally reading it. But for some reason, Frances Mayes' writing is a little too flowery and poetic for me. She is a beautiful writer, but when reading travel/ nonfiction writing, I guess I like it with a little more substance or structure. I never finished this book or Under the Tuscan Sun. I will try it again in a few years though! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mckinley | 1/26/2014

    " Nice discussion of food, art and literature along with travel descriptions. So autobiographical stories mixed in. Long. And hardly the world. Europe and mostly around the Mediterranean at that: Spain and Portugal, parts of Italy, England, Scotland, Turkey. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ashley | 1/23/2014

    " Armchair traveling with a writer who can conjure a full scene is fun, but I was distracted by how often she wished she could buy this or that property. The note of acquisitionism is unpleasant in an otherwise good read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 MrsErica Beaton | 1/20/2014

    " This is going to be one of my constant rereads. I love Mayes' poetic cognitive wandering through all of her travel memoirs. Readers never know exactly where she's going in each paragraph, but they gladly follow her beautiful imagery as she drifts from food to art to history to life. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Camas | 1/15/2014

    " Just sort of Eh. Mayes travels around the world, staying a month in each place, and falls into a repetitive descriptive style for each chapter/month. Not bad but I couldn't finish it. (Honestly, I bought it for the cover) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jenny | 1/13/2014

    " If you loved "Under the Tuscan Sun" and all its follow-ups, then you'll love Mayes' latest series of adventures. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kari | 1/11/2014

    " Had been working on this slowly but gave up, which is a cardinal sin in my world. The gardens get a little tedious, but a good description of the places she visits, to at least create interest in doing further research. I do get tired of *her* though. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mo | 1/3/2014

    " Not sure if this will get past "currently reading" status. It's dull. It reads more like a list than anything else. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kristine | 12/15/2013

    " I skipped around this book and read the parts I was interested in. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 George | 12/7/2013

    " Mayes's enthusiasm for life and travel shine in every sentence. She presents a vivid sense of each place she visits. Written with flair and imagination. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Myra Hyland | 12/6/2013

    " I love the observations Mayes makes while travelling and her discussion of the things I, like her, am interested in - food, history, art, architecture and literature. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kay | 10/31/2013

    " Liked this book, didn't love it. Having been many of the same places probably helped. Also I also love renting places to stay so you mix more into the culture and shy away from group tours. Hey, maybe I could write a book and then buy a house in Italy! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Wanda | 10/12/2013

    " I would actually give this 3 1/2 stars. Not as good as Under and Bella, but I do love her very personal explorations of places, food, drink, authors and their books. I also felt she revealed more of herself in this book, which made me like her more. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laura Duggan | 10/9/2013

    " This was a fascinating and enjoyable book. It was perfect for short periods of reading time but not a book to spend a day with. I liked her style of travel and got some great ideas about both future trips and trips I don't ever want to take. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Clare Mortensen | 5/31/2013

    " boring, elitist, dense. yet gorgeously written, jealousy-inducing. couldn't finish it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Aubrey | 2/11/2013

    " Entertaining at times but overall kind of boring. I have never read a travelog before and I'm not sure I would again. While it was interesting learning about some of the different countries Frances Mayes visited, it did not pull me in at any time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Katie Lockwood | 1/17/2013

    " ehhh.... not as good as Under the Tuscan Sun, drags some... "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Heidi | 12/5/2012

    " I chose to return this book before finishing it. While the language was very poetical and beautiful it didn't make for very interesting reading. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michelle | 10/11/2012

    " Mayes makes me want to travel! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen | 6/16/2012

    " i listened to this audio. it was not as good as i thought it could have been. it was read by the author which hindered my world-view a bit. i think i would have liked it more in bookform. i love travel writing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lois | 2/12/2012

    " Putting me to sleep, haven't been able to finish..... "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Peggy | 1/31/2012

    " Fatuous self absorbed puff pieces, I couldn't see the point. Bogus too since she went to each destination separately. Not MY kind of travel. Or writing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maya | 9/1/2011

    " Though this book contains one of my favorite lines ever, I found myself struggling to actually get through it. Probably jealousy, again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristine Olson | 8/9/2011

    " Beautiful writing about some amazing places in the world! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 New_worlds | 5/22/2011

    " I barely made it through the first chapter, only because it was Spain. It's was bunch of randam notes, or details about her life that were irrelevant. Horrible. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Brooke | 4/30/2011

    " It is a very descriptive book and at times it can be difficult to read because there are so many details. However, if you are ones of those people that likes to experience things vicariously, Mayes does a wonderful job in this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kay | 3/23/2011

    " Liked this book, didn't love it. Having been many of the same places probably helped. Also I also love renting places to stay so you mix more into the culture and shy away from group tours. Hey, maybe I could write a book and then buy a house in Italy! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel | 1/29/2011

    " It wasn't a terrible book, I just couldn't get into it. I read about 200 pages and finally decided to give up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Noel | 1/18/2011

    " LOVED this book! I can't wait to raed more of Frances Mayes. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelly | 1/9/2011

    " Made me want to visit Greece even more! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Beth | 10/29/2010

    " Boring! How could anyone make traveling to Europe seem like such a snooze? I couldn't finish it. "

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