Ms Facaros has had a busy year: with her husband, Michael Pauls, she has also produced the cheerfully opinionated Cadogan Guide to Dordogne, Lot and Bordeaux ( pounds 12.99). The best Atlantic resort, it declares, is Arcachon, source of Les Abatilles mineral water. The natural spring was discovered in 1922, it reports, when someone drilled near the ocean front in the hope of finding oil.
THE latest batch of Cadogan Guides includes a trilogy by Dana Facaros on groups of Greek islands: the Ionian ( pounds 7.99), the Dodecanese ( pounds 7.99) and the Cyclades ( pounds 8.99). Each guide is well produced and researched, but you may be miffed if you buy more than one: the first 100 pages or so of each are virtually identical.