"Uncorked is just like a good French wine: light, delicious, and full of flavour."
— Grant Lawrence, CBC
“Like a wry cross between Bill Bryson and Dave Bidini”
"Like a wry cross between Bill Bryson and Dave Bidini, Paul Shore’s funny, self-deprecating and wholesome recounting of a year spent in the French Riviera will ring très true for anyone who has made the trip to this special but highly exclusive part of the world. Shore captures exactly what it’s like to be a foreign national trying to bust into the local scene. And if you haven’t been to the South of France, Uncorked will have you looking up AirBnBs in places like Saint-Paul de Vence or Villefranche-sur-Mer while you practice your pétanque rolls. One part travelogue, one part self-help guide, one part memoir, Uncorked is just like a good French wine: light, delicious, and full of flavour."
— Grant Lawrence, CBC broadcaster and author of Adventures in Solitude: what not to wear to a nude potluck and other stories from Desolation Sound.
“Life is a marathon and not a race”
Paul has written an entertaining and thoughtful memoir of his adventures and misadventures as a Canadian living in Provence. Sport can be a way to break through barriers. Through the game of pétanque, Paul found his entry-point into French culture. His light-hearted story takes you to a place where the simple joys in life are what matters. During my Man in Motion World Tour 30 years ago, I blasted through Provence in a whirlwind. I look back on that time and wish I could have slowed down as Paul did. Life is a marathon and not a race - these poignant realizations come to light with time.
— Rick Hansen, Founder and CEO of the Rick Hansen Foundation
"Like a younger generation’s A Year in Provence"
A computer geek in the South of France? What could go wrong? In Paul Shore’s delightful and quirky memoir, he conjures an engaging and funny portrait of life as a young Canadian software engineer on the Côte d’Azur in the late 1990s. With remarkable storytelling skill, and through the device of learning to play the game of pétanque with the locals, Shore brings to life a time and place where community, simplicity and a slower place were revered. Like a younger generation’s A Year in Provence, Shore’s book arrives just at the time when our media-frenzied selves need it the most.
— Sarah Bancroft, co-author of Vancouver: The Unknown City and writer of the blog A Year in Paris
“Thanks so much for a wonderful read and bringing back such incredible memories.”
Very funny in spots and emotional in others. It reminded me of my own time in Europe and how much I miss it. And I loved your references to Chagall and the connections to your own background. As someone who has researched and written extensively about refugees, and who is an immigrant herself, I appreciated that the refugee crisis and being a stranger in a new land is not a new phenomenon. Thanks so much for a wonderful read and bringing back such incredible memories.
— Stella Harvey – Founder of the Whistler Writers Festival and author of The Brink of Freedom
“Shore’s nostalgic musings tap into a treasure trove of cross-cultural respect and understanding"
Paul Shore’s nostalgic musings on the ancient, nuanced sport of pétanque demonstrate how, with a dose of persistence, to tap into a treasure trove of cross-cultural respect and understanding in sunny Provence or, for that matter, just about any place on the planet.
— Jack Christie, writer-broadcaster, author of 52 Best Day Trips from Vancouver.
“Like Peter Mayle before him, Paul Shore made the leap and found a cornucopia of delights in his new home."
Many dream of relocating to France at some time in their lives. Like Peter Mayle (A Year in Provence) before him, Paul Shore made the leap and found a cornucopia of delights in his new home. Years later, you'll no doubt enjoy discovering Provence through his eyes. But don't be surprised if Uncorked leaves you more than a tad obsessed with finding the nearest game of pétanque.
— Stephen Hui, hiking writer and former Georgia Straight web and technology editor
"Unleash fond memories of the South of France for anyone who has spent time there."
The colorful stories in Uncorked will unleash fond memories of the South of France for anyone who has spent time there, of which I am one. Or it will encourage those who haven’t experienced that part of the world to start making travel plans. Paul’s humorous style of writing elicits affection for cultural nuances brought back wonderful memories --- from pétanque games on dusty grounds with hard-nosed local combatants to navigating ancient cobblestone alleys at race-driver speeds. He clearly immersed himself in French life and used his “don’t take no for an answer” mentality to enjoy formative experiences during a year as an accidental tourist in France. Reading this book taught me a great deal more about elements of the local culture, which I had overlooked in my many travels to the South of France.
— Gene Frantz, retired Principal Fellow at Texas Instruments, and father of Digital Signal Processing
"The fish-out-of-water story; the sweet and gentle humour."
"I enjoyed Uncorked immensely: the fish-out-of-water story; the sweet and gentle humour; and all of the characters, especially Hubert and his la puff! The story was very uplifting, and I could easily relate to finding oneself in a strange land and not knowing the customs, or the language."
— Rebecca Wood Barrett - Program Manager, Whistler Writers Festival
"His determination to master the game is admirable (or foolish)."
Paul Shore’s entertaining story of his year, as a young man in an ancient village in Provence is both entertaining and educative. Being immersed as a young techie on his own in an old culture in a language with which he is barely familiar, is a brave act in itself. But he undertakes this with a positive attitude and becomes fascinated by the game of boules played by elders in the community. His determination to master the game is admirable (or foolish). However, in doing so he is gradually absorbed into the community. He learns of the slower pace of these people and the benefits that pace permits in the appreciation of all the things we miss in our busy world. This is an enjoyable experience.
— Julia Levy, immunologist, co-founder of biotechnology firm QLT, educator, recipient of the Order of Canada