Mr Gandy's Grand Tour

Hodder & Stoughton. Apr. 2018. 320p. ISBN 9780340953075. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781444708073. F
We meet Mr. Gandy at a crossroads. In his mid-50s, his position as a graphics designer has been made redundant, so he has to decide how to handle forced retirement. Just then his wife has a fatal heart attack. What to do? With his three grown children (one of whom he actually likes) on their own, Timothy Gandy is as free as a British middle-class householder can be. Why not a grand tour of the type popular in the 18th century? Armed with dusty accounts of European tours, memories of reading E.M. Forster's A Room with a View, and, to show his practical side, a current guide book, he sets off for parts undetermined. Paris certainly, and Italy. After that, who knows? It's sure to be either an ugly midlife disaster or an opportunity for growth.
VERDICT Jovial BBC gardening program presenter and novelist Titchmarsh (Bring Me Home) delivers a thoroughly engaging fairy tale for adults about second acts and new beginnings. At a time when events on both sides of the pond can lead to vigorous head shaking followed by a profound lie-down, this welcome bit of escapism is perfect for whiling away an afternoon in the garden, followed by a bracing gin and tonic.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing