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Mastering the Art of French Eating: Lessons in Food and Love from a Year in Paris Hardcover – September 26, 2013
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Mah gladly dons rose-colored glasses in this gastronomic travelogue of regional French cuisine. She revels in the essence of summer captured in Provence’s fresh and creamy soupe au pistou; the gooey decadence of Savoie’s fondue; and the buttery, toothsome chew of Brittany’s buckwheat crepes, attempting to distract herself with the history of classic French dishes after her diplomat husband is called away from their new post in Paris for a yearlong assignment in Iraq. Another diplomat’s wife, Julia Child, is invoked throughout the book for guidance in French cuisine and in dealing with the unsettling feeling of playing second fiddle to a spouse whose job requires regular moves about the globe. The real joy of this book, though, is in Mah’s mouthwatering, bite-by-bite descriptions of the plates set before her in Parisian cafés, country homes, and hole-in-the-wall foodie hideaways. Francophiles will delight in the smattering of French words and phrases sprinkled throughout every page, and serious cooks may endeavor to follow the lengthy recipes for a signature regional dish included at the end of each chapter. --Amye Day Ong
"Mah admirably fits her research into easily digested bites, the reader's enthusiasm mirroring her own."
"By turns sweet, self-deprecating, humorous, and poignant, with questions of how we grow close to each other through food and curiosity, this memoir is a treat to savor."
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The happy reunion with her husband and their finding the perfect little Paris apartment on the very street Julia Child's apartment was, is frosting on the tasty cake this book serves up.
I have given it to friends as a gift, and can't wait for my book club to sink our teeth into this delicious book.
Through her descriptions I feel like I am almost there.
If you are interested in France, food and the highs (and, yes, lows) of following your dreams, read this book. You won't be able to put it down!
I also love this book because it is the perfect blend of memoir and information. I like to follow a story as I read, and the way she intersperses her personal story with history and culture is well balanced. Her subjects are well researched and connect naturally to her personal story. On top of that, Ann Mah is a likeable person. She is humorous, warm, and honest.
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Ann’s understanding of the language and the food is above anything I have ever read by an American writer.Read more