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Best Foot Forward: A 500-Mile Walk Through Hidden France Kindle Edition

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Length: 221 pages
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Editorial Reviews

Review

'A book to inspire' Good Housekeeping Magazine; 'There are a handful of authors who will achieve that elusive trick of making you laugh out loud. For me it's James Herriot, Bill Bryson & Susie Kelly.' French Entree Magazine; 'What a great sense of humour Susie has. It makes her writing so endearing. She's down to earth, kind-hearted and insightful. You feel as though you are walking with her.' US Reader; 'An amazing lady. Susie is an excellent author, descriptive, informative, and able to paint a picture with words that makes me feel like I am beside her on her journey. Perfect for the Francophile, the armchair adventurer, and the lover of good literature for this is surely literature.' Vine Voice reviewer; 'Reading her books is like listening to relaxing music.' US reader; 'This is one of the best travel books I have read to date. I thoroughly enjoyed reading every drop of it.' Vine Voice reviewer; 'How anyone man or women could leave their home (in the care of good person) and set of to WALK right across France is beyond me. She is an amazing person, so left reliant and brave she is incredible. The writing is in the style of a friend talking to you over a coffee, it is so personal. I have found a fabulous author in Susie Kelly and would recommend her books to everyone.' UK reader

About the Author

Born a Londoner, travel writer Susie spent most of the first 25 years of her life in Kenya. In 2014, her memoir I Wish I Could Say I Was Sorry about an abusive childhood growing up in post-war London and Kenya, was a US digital bestseller. She now lives in south-west France with her husband and assorted animals. She believes that her explosive temper is a legacy from her Irish-American grandfather, but has no idea who to blame for her incompetence as a housewife. Susie Kelly is the Patron of the 2015 Charroux International Literary Festival.

Product Details

  • File Size: 570 KB
  • Print Length: 221 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Blackbird Digital Books (January 13, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 13, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005UHJAK4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #188,145 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Susie Kelly was born in grey post-war London, and spent much of her childhood and young adulthood in the beautiful country of Kenya.

She now lives in south-west France with a menagerie of assorted animals, and is passionate about animal welfare.

Her first book "Best Foot Forward" was published by Transworld Publishers in 2003, followed by "Two Steps Backward" in 2004, and "A Perfect Circle" in 2006.

Since 2011 Susie's books have been published by Blackbird Digital Books, whose theme is strong, adventurous women living life to the full. Blackbird Digital Book people love birds and animals, travel, history, romance, natural health and environment, resourcefulness, humour, the surreal and magic.

If her house caught fire and she could only save three things (apart from her animals, of course), they would be courage, compassion and a sense of humour.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Richard on December 2, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
As a self confessed armchair traveller and long time Francophile, I am constantly in search of travelogues that give me that elusive combination of the feeling of 'being there' and intimacy. Having recently discovered 'The Valley of Heaven and Hell' by the same author, which gave me that combination in bucket loads, it was a delight to discover that she had written several other titles, all with the same accessible, authoritatively informative and - most importantly - effortlessly easy and entertaining style.

Susie Kelly seems to be one of those deliciously fortunate people to whom extraordinary things happen with an ease that makes you wonder what you are doing with your life; who for instance would advertise for someone -ANYONE - to house-sit her home and animals on the internet? Who would confidently expect sane replies? Who would, when they actually get them,see nothing unusual about the respondent being a complete stranger form Texas of all places, who turns out to be dependable, resourceful,and prepared to travel countless thousands of miles on the say-so of a stranger to a country she has never visited, and take on a role that a professional soldier might think twice about?

Joyously, this unlikely beginning is just the typically idiosyncratic precursor to a tale that takes in 500 miles of rural France and includes, in equal measure, laugh-out-loud tales of personal discomfort, disarmingly frank descriptions of the authors self doubt as to her sanity at taking on such a challenge, and absolutely oodles of insightful descriptions of the places she passes through, together with just the right amount of historical perspective.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Vancouver Reader on May 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I "borrowed" this book for Kindle and the kindest thing that I can say is that paying nothing for it was the correct price. This is a story of an English woman who walks and whines from La Rochelle to Lake Geneva. If you think you will gain some insight into this region of France or its people, think again. The descriptions of people and places seem very flat (particularly compared to the descriptions of dogs, horses, snakes, birds, spiders, etc. which are of far more interest to the writer than adults, or God forbid children who obviously annoy her greatly). Some of the "information" that she provides is simply hard to believe. "There was a time when motorists would deliberately hit deer and boar to win a free meal...". Seriously?? There was a time when the French were driving along trying to mow down a deer or a wild boar as a means of hunting??

I only wish I could give this zero stars.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By bas bleu on April 2, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is one of the best travel books I have read to date. The authors ability to include all of her adventure is what made this book remarkable to me. '
She gives wonderful history of many of the towns and villages she visits, I learned lots of new things I did not know. How different places were the capitals of what they did best down through history. Susie really knows a lot of history about many of the places she traveled through and I thoroughly enjoyed reading every drop of it.
She gives wonderful descriptions of the beauty and the nature she sees and experiences as she travels along, I could imagine the mountain air, and her descriptions of the feel of being smothered by humidity and the sound of waterfalls, the look of deep clear blue pools of water. I even enjoyed her descriptions of lizards, and slugs, and now I know that the only truly dangerous snake in France is the Asp, which is very small .
I loved her descriptions and stories of the people she meets and the kindnesses shown to her along her long journey. I think maybe there is a bit of the loner in her , this probably contributes to her being a wonderful writer. Being less involved with needing to be around people surely would give one more time to introspect on the beautiful details she draws for us.
How she every concluded her trip with the problems she had with her feet and her eye, what tenacity, truly an admirable adventurer and even more amazing author. Before I started this review I ordered two more of her books to be delivered to my Kindle. The Valley of Heaven and Hell - Cycling in the shadow of Marie-Antoinette bicycling 500 miles through Paris and Versailles, the battlefields of World War 1. The second book I ordered was - Travels With Tinkerbelle- 6.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Ursula Garcia on June 2, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There is no great tale in this book, but a collection of witty accounts, colorful vignettes, and sweet musings. It's nicely written, and you feel as if you've lived the moments with the author, from the blisters, rain, and grimy cafes, to hot showers and breathtaking scenery. A lovely read.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Barbara on April 19, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm a hiker and walker but only daily hikes. I enjoy reading about people who do longer treks, esp. when they put it together themselves or in a small group, and when it's in Europe. Susie has not done much hiking and does some pretty unsafe things during her trip. (Had old maps, bought inappropriate tents, etc., walked with bad feet not cared for and didn't take care of an eye problem.) She seemed more intent on reaching the last city than enjoying her journey.
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