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Julia's Chocolates by [Lamb, Cathy]
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Julia's Chocolates Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 265 customer reviews

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Length: 398 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The quirky debut romance from Lamb opens as Julia Bennett flees the Boston altar where her blueblood abuser fiancé, Robert Stanfield III, awaits her. She leaves her wedding gown in a North Dakota tree, and arrives in the tiny town of Golden, Oregon to take refuge with her beloved Aunt Lydia. As Julia slowly returns to a semblance of normalcy, Lydia's eccentric friends soon become Julia's near and dear as well: minister's wife Lara, psychic Caroline and abused wife Katie all have their own hidden pains, to which Julia can relate. Robert, who hit her and made her feel bad about her body, is never far from her thoughts, nor is her incapacitating "Dread Disease"-a feeling of panic she can't name. The dialogue is funny and bawdy: "Don't cry, love! You escaped a life's prison sentence with King Prick." Julia's struggles with people's interest in her chocolate-making, and in her person, make her a winningly flawed heroine, and there is well-deserved come-uppance for abusers of all types.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

'Wise, tender and very funny. I loved this beguiling novel about Love, friendship, and the enchantment of really good chocolate' Luanne Rice, bestselling author of Last Kiss

Product Details

  • File Size: 1111 KB
  • Print Length: 398 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (May 1, 2007)
  • Publication Date: May 1, 2007
  • Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000OVLIJ2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,974 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Gayla Collins on July 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
Usually chosing books on reviews, I was a bit apprehensive that I chose this book from the cover and inside blurb. Twenty pages in I was relieved to know I made a wise choice as Cathy Lamb's book is rich in character, plot and resolution.

Julia, abused her entire childhood, sickly chooses a cruel finance who continues the pattern with great zeal. The day of the wedding, in a moment of clarity, Julia realizes she is making a huge mistake. She escapes in her beat-up car from New England to Golden, Oregon to the comfort of her Aunt Lydia's farm, leaving her wedding dress dangling from a tree in North Dakota. At Aunt Lily's, Julia befriends 4 women who attend "Aunt Lydia's Psychic Nights" where each lady exposes her own set of disturbances. The friendships open Julia's injured mind to understanding no one deserves constant berating, constant hitting, constant chaos. But as she heals, her crazed fiance plots vicious revenge, and Julia knows a reckoning is coming.

I found this beautifully written because in the face of disturbing subject matter there was still uproarious humor, gentle moments, quirky, loveable characters and redemption. Written with a homespun prose, the book keeps you on a fragile edge, but doesn't leave you dangling for too long. A perfect balance makes this a must read for all that hide from truth or are in search of it.

Great first effort; I look forward to more books from this gifted author.
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By bhr on November 4, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
From the beginning of this story, chocolate is in the background. It represents security, peace, and self-confidence. It is a touchstone for the main character, Julia Bennett, a woman on the run from her past.

She had a crappy childhood and a pretty awful adult hood (so far). So, after running out on her abusive fiancee, she lightly packs her car (taking a few necessities, including some of her own chocolate) and heads for the home of her heart.

Julia's aunt Lydia is the hero of this story in many ways. She provides Julia the space comfort and energy Julia needs to grow. A cast of characters builds in Lydia's hometown of Golden, Oregon. They are all interesting (and there's a good number of GOOD male characters: a rarity in most chic-lit). But the coup de story is definitely Lydia. She goes around shouting things like "feel the female power in your breasts." Yet somehow, though I was almost embarrassed to read what she said, by the end, I could understand her message (though I don't know if I can ever love my body parts the way Lydia implores).

I adored the pacing of this story, the characters, the plot (which is, in many ways, graphically violent - reader be warned), and the "morals" of the story.

Scenes from this will occupy my thoughts for weeks. That is surely the hallmark of a wonderful book. Also, it features lots of orgasmic chocolate, which speaks to me.

Highly, highly recommended.

(*)>
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What a superlative book on so many levels. Although I'm a city person, I was prepared to move to Aunt Lydia's farm in Golden, Oregon. Julia went there to escape and found herself surrounded by love by an amazing cast of characters. I identified with parts of all of them, including the men. These people were so real to me, which speaks volumes about Cathy Lamb's character development. They were quirky, funny and, above all, caring and loving.

The dark side of the story chronicled child abuse and domestic violence. Julia had grown up in an abusive home, and like many victims, she was amazed that any man would want her, much less a prominent Bostonian. Robert constantly abused her, both verbally and physically, but she knew no different, until her wedding day. She ran like the wind across the country to Aunt Lydia, who had tried to protect her as a child.

This is a story of the triumph of the human spirit. Despite the sadness, I finished the book (with regret) feeling very happy. I highly recommend it because Cathy Lamb has awed me again.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was very surprised to be completely disappointed by this book. It was a poor cross between "The Divine Secrets of the Yaya Sisterhood" by Rebecca Wells and "Chocolat" by Joanne Harris. Both of these wildly popular books had a unique way of capturing the spirit of the characters. Yet, "Julia's Chocolates" fails to deliver that sense of knowing the people you are reading about. This novel seems to take elements from both of these books, and mishmash them together, to create something lesser than either.

The characters are more like caricatures, and none seem fully developed. Each one seems to be 'putting on a play', but not establishing themselves.

I wanted to love this book, and kept plugging along, even when it became repetitive and predictable. I wish I could say it ended better than it began. The beginning few pages were the best in the novel.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
wow, I loved this book! Best thing I've read in ages.

The characters are well developed - highly quirky, funny and will without a doubt work their way into your heart. Although this is a story about friendship and courageous women, it is also a tale about facing your fears, having the courage to take risks and finding yourself. What a journey - I simply howled about the Psychic Nights, cheered at the victories and felt the fear they faced. I can not wait for Ms. Lamb's next book and have to admit that it was hard to see this book end.

There were many moments where I laughed and cried during this treasure.
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