When her post office burns down, postmistress Veronique starts lobbying for its replacement. But her fellow residents of the small commune of Fogas in the French Pyrenees are too preoccupied to rally to her cause.
Mayor Serge Papon, overwhelmed by grief at the death of his wife, has lost his joie de vivre and all taste for village politics (and croissants) and it seems as though deputy mayor Christian (whose for Veronique makes him her usual champion) will soon be saying to the mountain community. And to Sarko the bull.
Add to this a controversial government initiative to reintroduce bears to the area and soon the inhabitants are at loggerheads, threatening the progress of the sacred and the very existence of Fogas itself.In yet another tale with more ups and downs than a Pyrenean horizon, things are about to get grizzly.
The French Postmistress is the third book in the Fogas series from Julia Stagg following L'Auberge and The Parisian's Return and although it probably is best to rest the other two books first to familiarise yourself with the town's colourful characters it can be read as a standalone as I did.
Veronique is pretty frustrated at the length of time and bureaucracy that it is taking to get approval to reopen the village post office had been destroyed in a fire but, with mayor Serge still mourning his wife Therese and deputy Christian worrying about saving his farm, it looks like she'll have to fight this battle on her own.
The villagers of Fogas have other things on their mind with the introduction of wild bears into the neighbouring mountains and it would seem that this is a decision that has split the town in two... those for and those against. Add to the mix a villain with devious plans for Fogas, the introduction of a handsome stranger, an unrequited love story and even a brief appearance by the Tour de France, and life is certainly going to be interesting for them all!
Yes I will admit there were a couple of times whilst reading that I was a little lost about what was going on as there were mentions of things that had obviously taken place in the previous books but on the whole it was not an issue that I didn't know who's who in the village as I was able to pick this up whilst reading this book.
The descriptive writing of the village in the heart of the Pyrenees, surrounding area and its residents appealed to me as the sort of place that I would love to live myself one day...I just need a lottery win first!
I'd like to thank Hodder & Stoughton for sending me a copy of this book to review.