If I could give 2 1/2 stars I would. After reading the customer reviews I purchased this book with great expectations and was very disappointed. The photographs are stunning. Five stars to Christopher Drake! It's Caroline Clifton-Mogg's writing that is so much blah, blah, blah.
In the text all you have to do is concede to the fact that the French originally invented every style, that they don't like color - except when they do, they only like simplicity - except when they don't and that everything must have a purpose - except things that don't. Example: On page 74, in describing a kitchen, Ms. Clifton-Mogg says "A French country kitchen has no need of any ornament that has only a decorative purpose. Each element, including the most ephemeral - a string of dried herbs, for example - is decoration enough." So, one wonders just what practical purpose the starfish and carved birds in the kitchen pictured on the page before serve. Or the empty bird cage suspended from the ceiling in the kitchen a couple of pages later.
I would have suggested skipping her written text and just reading the photographic descriptions but these are also a problem. Besides what I mentioned above, some of the descriptions just don't match the photos. In the bathroom section - as one example - she's talking about how the tub is painted to match the blue walls. The tub is white! No matter how you look at it, that tub has no blue tint to it at all. As I looked at the photos on the rest of the page, I found the blue tub in a completely different bathroom. And so it goes in the rest of the book. Sometimes she writes just to be using words. Her thesaurus must be worn out.
Bottom line - If you like lovely photographs and can get ideas just from them then you will like this book. If you want to read about French country style - try something else. This would be a waste of your time.