Pairing Books with Movies: The Bucolic Plague

Friday, March 22, 2013

The Bucolic Plague
How Two Manhattanites Became Gentlemen Farmers
by Josh Kilmer-Purcell

I read this one 100% because of Sandy’s review at You’ve Gotta Read This! She was definitely right on with her great review. It’s the hilarious and yet touching true story of a former drag queen and his partner who decide to buy a mansion and become farmers. The pair are New Yorkers at heart and the transition to small town life is a tough one.
They tackle everything from raising goats to exploring the crypt on their property. All the while they are making new friends and trying to keep up with their old lives. The author works at an advertising agency and his partner works for Martha Stewart. Their attempt at running a farm isn’t an easy adventure, but it’s a unique one!

It’s not all funny stories on the farm though. The book chronicles not only their country escapades, but also their personal struggles and their full-time jobs in the city. It’s a bittersweet look at attaining your dreams and trying to live up to someone else’s. It’s about trying to find the balance between happiness and perfection and trying to determine what you really want out of life. It’s less about the actual act of farming and gardening and more about living the life you want.

BOTTOM LINE: I was expecting this to be a quick fun read, but I actually really liked it. The guys struggle with the things we all struggle with; balancing your personal life and work, balancing your expectations for yourself and others, etc.

Pair with a viewing of the 1988 movie Funny Farm. I can’t tell you how many scenes from this book took me straight back to this hilarious movie. I think it would be the perfect accompaniment to the book.  


Sandy Nawrot said...

You are SO RIGHT, this is a modern version of Funny Farm! I have seen that movie about 20 times by the way. It is a favorite in our house. And when I worked, I always used to compare the hiring process to that know when they are trying to sell their house so they pay the town to "act normal"? When really they are all certifiable? That is exactly how we all acted when we tried to hire someone.

And I love those Beekman Boys. Some day I'm going to visit them.

Jeanne said...

That is the best title. Sometimes I have to read a book just because of the cleverness of the title.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Sandy - I know exactly what you mean about the hiring process. That movie is so hilarious!

Jeanne - That's what I thought when I saw Sandy review it!

Karen K. said...

I just finished this today!!! I was inspired after ordering some pasta sauce from their website. You can stream the first season of The Fabulous Beekman Boys on Netflix.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Karen K - No way! I'm totally going to check out their TV show now.

Jenners said...

You have to read Josh's memoir of his drag queen days (I Am Not Myself These Days). Very interesting and quite a different story and view of him. They were also on The Amazing Race two seasons ago and they won! (They weren't as interesting as I'd expected though.)

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Jenners - I was curious about that one. I'm going to have to add it to the list. I wish I'd read it befoer their time on the Amazing Race because I would have loved to see that!