{Book Review} My Life in France

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I thought setting two months for reading this months selection would be plenty of time! I have missed the deadline for my own book club. The perk of having your own book club means I can be late with my review of  My Life in France . For those youngens’ out there or those that live under a rock Julia wrote about her years in Paris and it was this move that set her career in motion. She brought French food to the masses with her books and television show The French Chef.

I’m not really going to “review” the book like a normally do. I mean, it’s a best selling book by the most beloved American chef! I will say that you don’t have to be a foodie to enjoy Julia’s memoir. The entire story of her life is fascinating. How she struggled with the language at a time when there were no google maps, internet and even making a long distance phone call was unheard of. What I love about this story is that Julia completely immersed herself in the culture and in her classes at the Le Cordon Bleu. She was such a perfectionist it’s incredible. She would have taken a lifetime to finish Mastering the Art of French Cooking if the publishers allowed it. Good thing for us she came to the conclusion early on in Paris that she must really be French and not the unserious 36 year old 6 ft 2 inch Californian that boarded the boat.

The book is also a step back in time to what it was like living in post war Europe. Julia writes about how her sister moved to Paris with them on a whim and quickly landed a job. How things have changed now! A move to Paris sounds romantic but today would most likely involve a lot of embassy meetings and visa paperwork. I could not stop laughing when Julia described her visit to England and a horrible meal of boiled chicken but that it was a “wonderful cultural experience”. It was every bit as awful as the Parisians had warned them it would be. Luckily things have changed in England now too.

Julia’s personality really comes across in the pages. She loved Paul so much and even states that she would never have a career if it weren’t for his encouragement and helping shaped her tastes in the first place. Julia leaves us all her valuable cooking advice, “learn how to cook – try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!”

Thank You Julia.

 

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