By August 20, 2009 0 Comments Read More →

Cooking and Blogging…and Reading and Discussing

With the new Meryl Streep-Amy Adams film, Julie & Julia, lighting up the national box office and Julia Child’s classic cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, back on the bestseller list, I’ve been wondering if book groups won’t take the hint and decide to plan some delicious discussion programs around 1) Julie Powell’s autobiographical account of her attempts to prepare all the recipes in Child’s cookbook, which is the basis for the movie; 2) the cookbook that inspired Powell, as well as so many other amateur and professional chefs; 3) Child’s own memoir, My Life in France; and 4) the movie, which everyone seems to be seeing and talking about right now.  It could be quite a meaty session!

I think it might be interesting to see how many readers have actually tried  Child’s recipes, and what their experiences were.  It also might be fun to recall impressions of watching Child on television and comparing the real person with Streep’s portrayal.  Powell’s book is about blogging as well as cooking, so it’s still quite timely — and then there’s the connecting topic of how each woman charted her own personal development, as explored in the books and the movie.

Of course, since the predominant theme of all these works is food, you’ll have to provide some tasty refreshments, or combine the discussion with a meal — or at the very least, a glass of wine.  This idea should please a lot of palates, in terms of both substance and sustenance.  As Julia herself would say, “Bon appetit!”

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About the Author:

Ted Balcom lives in Arlington Heights, IL and conducts workshops on leading book discussions, about which he has also published a book: Book Discussions for Adults: A Leader’s Guide (American Library Association, 1992).

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