Mar 10, 09
Read in January, 2009
Anything Considered tells the story of Bennett, an Englishman who enjoys living a luxurious life in France, but unfortunately is running out of money to do so. Bennett puts an ad up in the International Herald Tribune looking for a job. He gets a response from Julian Poe, an extremely wealthy man. Poe is asking Bennett to live in an all expense-paid Monaco apartment and watch a very important case containing a serum that would make truffles, an extremely decadent and expensive mushroom, grow faster and in larger quantities. Bennett thinks that the job doesn't require much work so he decides to take it. Complications arise though with the case being delivered into the right hands. Because of this, Poe feels that Bennett needs a partner, so he chooses Anna, a former lover of his. Readers follow the many illegal and dangerous adventures that Anna and Bennett uncover as the book progresses.
"But Bennett suffered from Optimism, and he was unwilling to leave France. And so, with scanty qualifications, other than a good amateur eye for property and a pressing need for sales commissions, he had joined the roving band of agents immobiliers-some of them no better qualified than he-who spend their lives rooting through the Provencal countryside." (Pg. 1)
I chose this quote because I think it shows how Peter Mayle made negative situations light and airy, which is seen throughout the book.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys or knows French, because even though the book is written in English, there are sometimes French sayings put into the text. I would also recommend Anything Considered to anyone who enjoys a story with a lot of adventure but can handle many characters that play similar roles, because I found that was often the case with this book.
In my opinion the genre is mainly adventure and two themes addressed in Anything Considered are desire for money and betrayal.