You're in for a bounder of a tale about Provence involving some English executive (who, in this case, is named Simon) who has had enough of the business world and falls in love with the south of France. Amusing and comforting in equal measure. Hotel Pastis started out as a very pleasant and easy read absorbing the reader into the essence of Provence and French life. A charming small hotel in the green heart of Maastricht. It is only in the final chapters of the novel that disappointment and anticipation of anti-climax sets in. Welcome to hotel Pastis. Hotel Pastis is a Peter Mayle novel, nothing more, nothing less.