Friday, September 24, 2010

Food Fiction

I finished a fun fiction full of food book ;-) ... Comfort Food by Kate Jacobs. The popular food show host, "Gus" Simpson, a widowed mother of two adult daughters, is faced with having to host a live cooking show with a saucy younger beauty queen Carmen Vega. Her daughters, along with ex boyfriends get roped into the show, and viewers love the live drama. The food talk/competition was great. Jacobs is more known for her first popular book, The Friday Night Knitting Club - which I enjoyed too. As a knitter I've enjoyed several knitting stories: like The Knitting Circle, and knitting mysteries by Ft Collins Colorado author, Maggie Sefton.

Another book I read this past year connected to food was Clementine in the Kitchen by Phineas Beck (Samuel Chamberlain). Prior to WWII the Chamberlain family lived in France and Clementine presided over their kitchen. She so loved the family and them her, that when they had to move back to Massachusetts, she moved with them. With her not able to speak much English and used to fresh markets, her shopping experiences in America are fun ... and thought provoking ... A fun entry is her first exposure to America, a stopover at a family friend's home before they settled into their own home. The Yankee breakfast was her first eye-opener: orange juice, cornflake cereal, ham and eggs, along with muffins and cinnamon rolls, and pale, watery coffee. She couldn't get used to ice water instead of a glass of wine at meals. And then at the Sunday evening barbecue, she had her first hot dog and beer from a can poured into a paper cup, sharing this meal with the delighted son Phineas. The Americanization of Clementine had begun. The Chamberlains and the Childs crossed paths. I listened to Julia Child's My Life in France and couldn't wait to watch the movie "Julie and Julia", and ended up buying her Mastering the Art of Cooking two volume cookbook set.

I listen to tons of audio books while working in the kitchen, around the house and garden, and doing my textile arts. A local author, Diane Mott Davidson, has volunteered helping a caterer so to be a fly on the wall in many settings that have helped her write her murder mystery novels. I've listened to everyone she's written, getting them from the library. I like to start with author's first books so to grow with the author and the characters, as many of them carry on with a main character or theme. Since this blog is focused on food I'm not going to tell you all my favorites, maybe someday on my other blog. But Diane Mott Davidson writes about the food being prepared in the midst of the story and shares recipes at the end of the book. She's got titles like Killer Pancake, The Last Suppers, Fatally Flaky, Dyeing for Chocolate ...

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