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Bread Alone: A Novel Paperback – May 28, 2002
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“A charmingly romantic first novel…fun to read and meaningful to remember-no small feat.” (Booklist)
“Engaging…Hendricks creates a compelling character whose wry, bemused and ultimately wise voice hooks the reader…a well written, imaginative debut.” (Publishers Weekly)
About the Author
A former journalist, copywriter, computer instructor, travel agent, waitress, and baker, Judith Ryan Hendricks is the author of three previous novels, including the bestseller Bread Alone. She and her husband live in New Mexico.
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The main character is worthy of the title heroine, because it's her story, she is a leading lady and though sweet and naïve to begin with she learns the hard way that being in love doesn't come with any guarantees and that life is really a path we must sometimes walk alone. Judi Hendricks has captured the essence of Seattle in such away that having lived on Queen Anne at one point her descriptions brought back vividly the sounds and smells of Seattle better than any author I have read to date. Although I normally read Sci-Fi or Fantasy, once in awhile it's just lovely to curl up with a book that feels like home. Bread Alone felt like slipping into my favorite slippers. Made me want to bake bread for sure.
Years ago, when very young Wynn worked for a baker in France and loves this kind of work, finds a small bakery where she is offered a job. Not high paying, hours late at night, early mornings, baking bread. Wynter finds her niche, loves the job. She rents a small house, furnishes it from odds and ends, makes a nest, and still thinks of David.
Wynn meets Mac, a bartender, in a little hole in the wall bar. Mac doesn't want committments, he's a free spirit. The two go out, have fun, enjoy, are more like two friends.
Readers meet Wynn's coworkers,especially Linda. Different personalities, different backgrounds.
As the book goes on, Wynn grows up, takes charge of her life and decides not to make the same mistakes she made before.
This is a great read for foodies, there are wonderful recipes for bread and desserts. The book is well written, goes deep into emotions, is a delightful read.
After lots of crying, whining and basically beating up on herself, she finally hits on something that gives her pleasure--baking bread. This is the part of the book that I like best--the talk of making bread, the tips on bread baking, and recipes. Wyn finally decides to move to Seattle to take a job at a coffee shop and bakery as assistant to the bread baker. Wyn finally starts to make a life for herself there and learns to depend on herself and how to make real friends.
The characters that she meets in Seattle are all more quirky and better formed than the California characters. I enjoyed the growth that Wyn's character displayed in the book. I would have given the book five stars if Wyn had extracted the maximum amount of money that she was entitled to and got on with her life sooner.
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