- Paperback: 576 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (April 23, 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0307473414
- ISBN-13: 978-0307473417
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.1 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 406 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,824 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child Paperback – April 23, 2013
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“By far the most substantial new book on Child. . . . A lively, affectionately detailed portrait.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“An unabashed celebration of the mistress of haute cuisine.”
—San Francisco Chronicle
“A rollicking biography that captures the vision, pluck and contagious exuberance that were the essence of Julia Child.”
“A much-appreciated, well timed gift to us all. . . . Julia has never been more alive in the hearts and minds of those who grew up with her and ate and drank her dreams.”
—The Huffington Post
“Those with a hunger for all things Julia have a substantial new biography by Bob Spitz to sink their teeth into. . . . Author and subject almost become one, as Spitz channels the spirit of Child in his own words.”
—The Washington Post
“[Spitz] reveals how [Child] helped redefine domesticity in the media age, transforming the way we cook, eat and think about food. . . . The book makes a strong case for Child as a 'cultural guerrilla' on par with Andy Warhol, Bob Dylan and Helen Gurley Brown.”
“[An] enthusiastic, heroically researched biography. . . . Spitz goes beyond mere history and provides a full, human portrait of Julia.”
“[A] mammoth, inspiring biography.”
—The Washington Times
“A comprehensive and compelling biography . . . that also functions effectively as a history of 20th-century American culture on topics ranging from the evolution of the O.S.S. to the quirks of public television.”
—The Christian Science Monitor
—Lev Grossman, Time Magazine
“The most engaging celebrity biography we’ve read in years. . . . Spitz manages to convey the vigor, curiosity, confidence and booming voice of a truly remarkable woman as if she is sitting at the kitchen table with you. . . . [He] is a fantastic writer.”
“This thick, fat, almost sinfully good read should definitely be put high up on the gift list for the food lover in your life. Julia would love you for this.”
“[Dearie] takes readers beyond the image of this tall, eccentric woman with a funny voice and establishes her as one of the most distinctive cultural individuals of the 20th century.”
—The Canadian Press
“Juicy, masterfully written.”
“A detailed, nuanced biography of television's beloved ‘French Chef.’”
“A biography perfectly suited to its subject—as lively, fascinating, and singular as Julia Child herself.”
—Daniel Okrent, author of Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition
About the Author
Bob Spitz is the award-winning author of The Beatles, a New York Times best seller, Reagan, as well as seven other nonfiction books and a screenplay. He has represented Bruce Springsteen and Elton John in several capacities. His articles appear regularly in magazines and newspapers, including The New York Times Magazine; The Washington Post; Rolling Stone; and O, The Oprah Magazine, among others. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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That said, the one aspect of the book that was disappointing - and that prevents me from giving it a five-star review - is that it was unabashedly uncritical (another way of saying the same thing is that the book is fawning and suggests that Julia Child could do no wrong). She is intolerant of gay people, but it's discussed as though it's one more adorable quirky trait; she seems somewhat incapable of dealing with the declining physical and mental health of her husband, and in fact has a relationship with another man while her husband is still alive, but it's treated as though it's appropriate given her strong life force and high energy level; and so on. This adoration makes one question whether her treatment of other people and issues was somewhat less benign than the author conveys.
Still, I'm glad I read it and would highly recommend it, especially to people who - like me - don't know much about Julia Child. One suggestion would be not to read it on an empty stomach; one gets extremely hungry throughout!
I read this book on my Kindle, and did not peek to the last page, but thought,"Wow, this is a long book!" When I finished reading, I realized that the remaining 30% of the pages were bibliography or footnotes documenting just about everything presented.
It isn't a highly intellectual effort, but it is quite readable and informative. So many things I did not know about Paul and Julia, including how great a relationship they had. He was her biggest fan. Also, she managed to do what she wanted in some very unlikely places. She was creative in the kitchen, but also she was able to create an original life.
Who would have thought she was a California girl! She fit into the intellectual scene of Boston like a hand in a glove. Her part in bringing public television to the American public is not to be minimized. And, her dedication to her alma mater was life long.
It might be no recommendation for the book, but after reading it, my plans to remodel my kitchen have changed to include more features that were in Julia's many kitchens, all done by her husband Paul. I'm planning to visit the Smithsonian to see this last Cambridge kitchen from her home there, and glean from it ideas for my own place. In such a kitchen, with such a kitchen angel watching over my shoulder, how can I help but enjoy the place?
DEARIE is a book I enjoyed reading, because it presented Julia as a dynamic American woman.
This book is a more definitive naration of her life, up to her death. It would have been more inclusive if it had mentioned how she felt about all of the hoopla about Julie and Julia and all of the rebirth surrounding her recipes. Did she see the movie and what did she think of it? Meryl Streep was awesome in the movie but in the book, you find out that Julia was not a fan of hers. She had strong opinions on just about everything and was really a woman way before her time. Since the book pretty much starts with how her parents grew up, you can really get a full picture of her background. She definitely was not a "smile and wear beige" type of woman. She was an amazing woman, before the time of women's liberation.