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Foreword by Amanda Hesser Introduction i Whittier and Laguna Beach, 1908--1922 ii At Boarding School, 1923--1928 iii From Dijon to Eagle Rock, 1929--1936 iv At Le Paquis, 1936--1939 v At Bareacres, 1939--1949 vi California and Provence, 1949--1961 vii In St. Helena, 1961--1970 viii Last House, 1971--1980 ix The Lodestar, 1981--1992 Notes
Joan Reardon is a culinary historian and author of Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M. F. K. Fisher and M. F. K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters: Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table, among other books. Avram Dumitrescu is an Irish artist and illustrator specializing in food, architecture, and animals. His work has been featured in the Southern Review, Gastronomica, The Writer magazine, and the Ulster Tatler.
Verdict: Recommended for larger public libraries and universities or special collections. Background: Reardon's (Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M.F.K. Fisher) latest work marks the centennial of the birth of a culinary icon. This deftly told biography focuses on M.F.K. Fisher the cook and reveals the origins of her awareness of the power and pleasure of food. From her first kitchen in France, a tiny but bright five-by-three-foot room, to Last House, where the main room served as a kitchen, dining room, and den, Fisher allowed the places she cooked in to inspire the food she prepared. Many years living in the south of France created a natural affinity for simplicity, and Fisher would often build meals around one vegetable, rounded out with fresh, local bread, cheese, and wine. Recipes mentioned in the text close each chapter, over 25 in all, including Hindu Eggs (a childhood disaster she revisited as an adult), Summer Savory Soup, Vevey Market Mushrooms, and Quail Ragout. Also included are 18 photographs from the family's private collection and 24 watercolor illustrations commissioned for the book.--Rosemarie Lewis, Broward Cty. Public Schs., Fort Lauderdale, FL Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
"A brisk, charming biography of the beloved food writer's life, through the lens of where and what she cooked." O At Home "Deftly told... Reveals the origins of her awareness of the power and pleasure of food." Library Journal "Reardon delivers a history that, like Fisher's famous dishes, is at once simple and hugely enjoyable." Philadelphia Inquirer "The charm and timeless inspiration are immediately accessible in this gorgeous volume." New York Newsday "An informed and elegant treatise on the kitchens in which... probably the greatest food writer of the 20th century worked and cooked." National Post "Charming tribute." Orange Coast Magazine "Summarizes key points in Mary Frances' life and complicated relationships, but through the intriguing slant of the many homes she lived in." San Francisco Bay Guardian "Insightful... Needs to be enjoying a primo position on your bookshelf." The Wine News "A reissue most worth paying attention to." Eat Me Daily