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Because Julia Child is such a familiar and beloved presence in our culture, it is amazing how much there was left to learn about her. Julie and Julia, along with Julia's lovely memoir My Life in France only scratched the surface of this remarkable and fascinating woman who actually launched PBS (really!) and defined the American palate. For much of her adolescence and throughout her twenties, Julia was something of a lost soul. She burned with a desire to have an impact on the world but had no idea how to make that happen or what field she might excel in. It disappointed her that she was nothing more than what she called "a social butterfly," without a goal. "I felt I had particular and unique gifts," she wrote in her diary, "that I was meant for something, and was like no one else." How right she was! But she weathered many misadventures before those gifts began to materialize.
Oddly, everything began to coalesce for Julia in Ceylon, of all places. At the outbreak of World War II, still without a sense of purpose, she volunteered for government service and was shipped overseas as a member of the OSS, America's burgeoning spy agency that later became the CIA. She worked in its Registry, under "Wild Bill" Donovan, and was responsible for the location and movements of every U.S. spy operating in the Southeast Asia theater.
In Ceylon, Julia also met her future husband, Paul Child, who worked in a capacity similar to hers. Initially, Julia had had a hard time finding true love--it took her awhile. Back home, the heir to the Los Angeles Times had proposed to her on several occasions, but he struck Julia as too bland for her outsized spirit. She was a big person (over 6'3") with a big personality and couldn't be contained in the expected role of "the little woman." I found it very moving when she finally found true love, although she was still adrift about what her life purpose would be.
A lunch in France changed everything. It was a powerful moment when she hit on her true calling at the age of forty. In the book, I delve into the extraordinary path Julia followed to create eye-poppingly delicious food and introduce it to an American public that was starving for a new, imaginative and creative way to cook. From there, it was through engaging force of her once-troublesome outsized personality that she went on to have a profound impact on the way people eat--and live.
Very well written and extremely well researched, this book is a delightful read.
The book is too long but then the subject matter is so big it would be hard not to want to include all these details.
Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child by Bob Spitz has to be one of the best biographies I have read.
Interesting Lady and good reading. I won't bother doing any kind of analysis. She's a cook, a strong lady, and interesting. I enjoyed her book.Published 2 days ago by M. S. Fenton
anyone who eats will love this book - like an overstuffed refrigerator, there is something for everyone in it. Try it in the original "deerie's" honor.Published 1 month ago by Thomas H. Frankel
This is a remarkable book, one I found very hard to put down. Everyone knows the name Julia Child but how many people really know the story of her amazing life? Read morePublished 1 month ago by Johnny 1955-2055
A lady I know says Julia Child is her mentor. She has all of her cookbooks.
I knew she would love to know more about Julia. She said it was so interesting. Read more
The details of Julia Child's life were extraordinary. Motivating and inspiring. She had the courage and curiosity to do things she knew nothing about but turned that into a life's... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Catherine G. Miles