Monsieur Mediocre: One American Learns the High Art of Being Everyday French

Monsieur Mediocre: One American Learns the High Art of Being Everyday French

A hilarious, candid account of what life in France is actually like, from a writer for Vanity Fair and GQ Americans love to love Paris. We buy books about how the French parent, why French women don't get fat, and how to be Parisian wherever you are. While our work hours increase every year, we think longingly of the six weeks of vacation the French enjoy, imagining them at A hilarious, candid account of what life in France is actually like, from a writer for Vanity Fair and GQ American...

DownloadRead Online
Title:Monsieur Mediocre: One American Learns the High Art of Being Everyday French
Author:John von Sothen
Rating:
Genres:Cultural
ISBN:0735224838
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:288 pages pages

Monsieur Mediocre: One American Learns the High Art of Being Everyday French Reviews

  • Ryan Miller
    Nov 14, 2019
    The book isn?t bad. It?s a clever memoir written by a clever fellow with clever stories. I just couldn?t get into it and couldn?t relate to any parts of his descriptions. I?m sure that it connects well with others; it just didn?t connect with me, and I put it down before fi...
  • Kelly
    Nov 30, 2019
    Thank you Mr. von Sothen for making me laugh so hard I cried ... I couldn't speak at times for laughing, but also showing us a certain poignancy about your life. If you like books about Paris, this is definitely worth your time. ...
  • Mark
    Jul 28, 2019
    A wonderful, personal, funny and touching....memoire? Sociopolitical critique? Whimsical travel lit? It's hard to classify this eminently readable and enjoyable volume. John (I've known him for 30 years, I get to call him John) has always been a keen observer and deft wordsmith, bot...
  • Lesley
    Aug 16, 2019
    This was entertaining and self-effacing - an interesting look at Paris from the perspective of an American AND a parent. Not laugh-out-loud-bust-a-gut funny like Me Talk Pretty One Day (Sedaris) or magical like From Paris to the Moon (Gopnik). ...
  • Michaela
    Sep 01, 2019
    3.5 stars. I was half way through and not really loving it. Probably fed up with his privileged lifestyle. But then came the vacation chapter and I laughed out loud. Also fascinating was the voting chapter. Must say the idea of a 48 hour campaign blackout and no polling results is appe...
  • Jennifer
    Jul 26, 2019
    In the beginning, it seemed line the author did not like France and I wasn?t sure if I wanted to continue reading. But, eventually a more positive, funny spin emerged and I enjoyed it. Learning a bit about France, even if only from one person?s point of view was interesting. ...
  • Jennifer
    Apr 20, 2019
    If you took a poll in the USA, I would guess Paris would likely make the top 10 list for dream vacation destinations. Paris resident John Von Sothen remembers what it was like to wonder about, experience for the first time, and now be completely immersed in what was once literally fore...
  • Elijah
    Jun 25, 2019
    This has interesting information about life in Paris, but this guy?s a low-grade asshole and not very funny. ...
  • Stephanie
    Jun 19, 2019
    Off with the Rose Colored Glasses! Monseiur Mediocre http://fangswandsandfairydust.com/201... I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader?s copy of this book. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted. As the synopsis above says...
  • Holly
    Jul 10, 2019
    Insightful essays on modern-day France of the past 15 years. Hilarious, laugh out loud chapters. Not a fast read if you really want to enjoy his writing style and absorb all the nuances and language faux pas. A lot of fun to read. ...
  • Julie
    Jul 07, 2019
    I wanted to love this book. It had decent reviews and I spend a lot of time in the car listening to audio books. It seemed like a fun book for long commutes. I enjoyed the authors voice reading his book. He was easy to listen to and added context in the inflection of his voice. Wha...
  • Maureen Grigsby
    Sep 03, 2019
    This is a wonderful, in depth look at what it is like to leave the United States and take up permanent residence in a European country. The author discusses language barriers, museums, child care, health care, parties, etc. in a very Bill Bryson fashion. I laughed a lot reading this bo...
  • Jules
    Nov 08, 2019
    I found this book from my local library?s featured audiobook newsletter. The title of this book grabbed me, and the synopsis was equally intriguing. I completely agree with the author?s take that American?s have a very romanticized view of life in Paris and France. I thorough...
  • Amy
    Sep 05, 2019
    The author had an uncanny knack for seesawing between chapters from funny, to annoying, to snobbish, then back to caring, self-deprecating, and then to a strange combination of annoying and kind all at the same time. The chapter titled, "The Aristocrats," almost had me close the book f...
  • J
    Nov 11, 2019
    This memoir is the perfect antidote to ?Aren?t the French Just Perfect? books that proliferate in book stores. They don?t get fat. They have perfect children. They are stylish always. Turns out, the French are just people - flawed, funny, and human. The author is self-aware and...
  • Shelley
    Oct 24, 2019
    The title is an apt description of the book. ...
  • Eugene LeCouteur
    Aug 30, 2019
    The two best chapters in the book are the first and last both of which are about his parents. The first chapter is how as a child he fell in love with Paris through his mother's reminiscences of being there as a young woman. The final chapter is about the deaths of his parents and his ...
  • Tracy Jo Ingram
    Jan 08, 2020
    Zipped through this in just a couple days. Wow! What a wonderful account comparing American and French lifestyles, comparing and contrasting with candid honesty and humor the pitfalls and pretentions of both. While the takeaway is it?s not as romantic as it seems, this book still div...
  • Helen
    Jul 29, 2019
    John von Sothen sets out to disabuse assumptions about Paris and let you know what it's "really" like--at least for upper middle class people with kids, flexible jobs and lots of connections. The book is a series of essays about his 15 years as an American ex-pat in Paris, a status bro...
  • Susan
    Jun 29, 2019
    My favorite genre - ex-pats who tell the story of how they ended up in another country. I seem to be drawn to books based in France and Italy. This was a good tale, the author sounds like he is a real character! In a good way. He has a very wry and sarcastic sense of humor which I trul...
  • Joey
    Oct 06, 2019
    Our library provides free copies of BookPage, which is a great little advert magazine for finding new and upcoming books. I highly recommend it if you?re trying to find something new to shake up your queue. Knowledge of Monsiuer Mediocre came to me via that magazine, and after a few ...
  • Jessica
    Jul 22, 2019
    This book wasn't quite what I expected. I'm not entirely sure what I thought I was getting into. There are parts that made me laugh out loud - particularly the road trip engine chicken. But other parts I thought could have used a bit of streamlining/editing/focusing. The first couple o...
  • R Fontaine
    Aug 31, 2019
    The book reasonably held my attention although I quickly got to the point of not caring at all for Van Southan. I completely checked out as he dragged out the tiring political diatribe when he became so mortified that Trump was elected President that he couldn?t go to the various soc...
  • Jessica
    Aug 04, 2019
    I ordered this book after hearing a positive review of it on a podcast during which panelists were recommending ?summer reads.? The Francophile in me couldn?t resist, but I wish I would?ve. There were several points throughout the book where I thought about abandoning it, but t...
  • Meagan Houle
    May 23, 2019
    I freely admit I knew nothing of modern French culture when I chose "Monsieur Mediocre," nor had I ever done much thinking on the subject at all. The title was impossible to pass up, though, and I immediately fell head over heels in love with John's self-deprecating style. I'm not sure...
  • Amelia
    Aug 08, 2019
    Before and after traveling to France for the first time this spring, I have devoured books written by ex-pats about their time in France (like Julia Child and David Lebovitz). Prior to my trip, I used these books to prep for interacting with the French; after my trip, I?ve read them ...
  • Kim Bender
    Aug 13, 2019
    Loved these witty essays about life as an American man confronting his fantasy France, propelled by a shotgun wedding to a French actress and the reality of raising kids in a foreign land. Incisive, funny as hell. Enjoyed every minute. The author's simultaneous ability to make fun of a...
  • Books I'm Not Reading
    Nov 30, 2019
    I did review this book on my Booktube channel, but I'll say a few things about it here. As someone who reads a fair number of books about France and Paris, this one does not romanticize it, but isn't afraid to talk about the benefits of living there. The author reminds me very much of ...
  • Kristen
    Apr 23, 2019
    Life is too short to read poor books. I quit 2/3 of the way through and only made it that far because I won the Goodreads giveaway. This author is the ?guest who loves to hear himself talk and goes on way too long.? I was expecting some humor like most ?man in a new country? b...
  • William Jordan
    Jun 28, 2019
    Amusing, ultimately touching story of an American man who marries a French woman and lives in Paris. I was put off initially by his dwelling on his upper-crust upbringing in the US, with its considerable distance from normal people. Similar level of society in Paris. But I eventually g...