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Powell flounders in her latest cooking-themed memoir. Trying to end an affair, the married Powell leaves town and seeks distraction in a butcher shop. She explores her obsessions with meat and with her lover—but listeners will quickly tune out. Her sarcastic inflections, flat tone, and nervous voice that worked reasonably well with Julie and Julia sound supercilious and affected here. The clunky performance cannot redeem the uninspired prose, and Powell—who compulsively cheats on her saintly husband—is difficult to empathize with. A Little, Brown hardcover. (Dec.)
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The author of the charming, riveting, thrilling—and successfully filmed—Julie and Julia (2005), in which Powell recounted her year spent cooking all the recipes in Julia Child’s classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking, has turned to butchery! As she relays in her new memoir, after her “year with Julia,” she apprenticed in a butcher shop in upstate New York and learned the trade from the inside out, from sinew to steak. Another prominent theme here is the stress placed on her marriage to the understanding, even noble Eric (as he was depicted in the previous memoir) by their mutual infidelities. It’s a grim book. Powell’s fans happily voyaged with her through Julia Child’s cookbook, but taking the journey through her learning the “art” of butchery is another matter. Graphic, even gross, detail about “breaking down” a beef or pig carcass and about her adulterous sex life (Do we really want to hear about her phone sex with her lover?) blocks any sunshine from emerging from these pages. The previous book made “foodies” of us all, but this book may convince us that vegetarians have had the right idea all along. --Brad HooperSee all Editorial Reviews
Negative reviewers: Are you freaking kidding me? Wow, judgey judgey people out there. How can you hate Julie Powell? Read morePublished 2 months ago by Donna Schorer
How ever did this book find its way into print? Powell's one true love--herself--gets in the way of her writing. Read morePublished 2 months ago by tanya
Many reviewers have been quite harsh with their criticism of this book. And, much of their criticism is justified. Powell is someone that is polarizing. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jade Craven
If you want to read a "book" on how a person manages to make every mistake possible in their marriage, totally unapologetically, yet still manages to blame all their... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Carrie
Very disappointed at the R-rating that this book should have had. It's basically pornagraphic. The story would have been much better without the graphic sexual details.Published 4 months ago by Holly Freedman Hollander
I have never read a worse book written by such a self indulgent, self absorbed louts who has no idea how to write, let alone write such a piece of garbage. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Johnny 1955-2055
I am a prolific reviewer of food and restaurants, but, books, not so much. I am struck, more than anything, that so many other reviewers have been so quick to sit in judgment of... Read morePublished 8 months ago by HeLLfyReKat
There are ups and downs in this book. Unlike the first one, this feels like a long rant about nothing. The animal cruelty is rather disturbing. Read with a grain of salt.Published 8 months ago by Kimberly Jaye