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4 Beaverton Cooking and Food- Gastronomic Literature
2 Burnside Cooking and Food- Food Writing

Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously (Movie Tie-in)

by

Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously (Movie Tie-in) Cover

 

Staff Pick

Finally, someone willing to admit just how dirty a kitchen can get! Powell's story is at once a comic tale of struggling to find one's balance in the adult world, and a witty exploration of why — and how — we cook. Gastronomes, as well as those more inclined to order take-out, will enjoy Powell's down-and-dirty journey into French cuisine, but her depiction of America is the secret ingredient that holds the whole recipe together. A nourishing read if you love to cook or would rather stay out of the kitchen altogether.
Recommended by Emily, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

With the humor of Bridget Jones and the vitality of Augusten Burroughs, Julie Powell recounts how she conquered every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking and saved her soul.

Julie Powell is 30 years old, living in a rundown apartment in Queens and working at a soul-sucking secretarial job that's going nowhere. She needs something to break the monotony of her life, and she invents a deranged assignment. She will take her mother's dog-eared copy of Julia Child's 1961 classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and she will cook all 524 recipes. In the span of one year.

At first she thinks it will be easy. But as she moves from the simple Potage Parmentier (potato soup) into the more complicated realm of aspics and crepes, she realizes there's more to Mastering the Art of French Cooking than meets the eye. With Julia's stern warble always in her ear, Julie haunts the local butcher, buying kidneys and sweetbreads. She sends her husband on late-night runs for yet more butter and rarely serves dinner before midnight. She discovers how to mold the perfect Orange Bavarian, the trick to extracting marrow from bone, and the intense pleasure of eating liver.

And somewhere along the line she realizes she has turned her kitchen into a miracle of creation and cuisine. She has eclipsed her life's ordinariness through spectacular humor, hysteria, and perseverance.

Review:

"Powell became an Internet celebrity with her 2004 blog chronicling her yearlong odyssey of cooking every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. A frustrated secretary in New York City, Powell embarked on 'the Julie/Julia project' to find a sense of direction, and both the cooking and the writing quickly became all-consuming. Some passages in the book are taken verbatim from the blog, but Powell expands on her experience and gives generous background about her personal life: her doting husband, wacky friends, evil co-workers. She also includes some comments from her 'bleaders' (blog readers), who formed an enthusiastic support base. Powell never met Julia Child (who died last year), but the venerable chef's spirit is present throughout, and Powell imaginatively reconstructs episodes from Child's life in the 1940s. Her writing is feisty and unrestrained, especially as she details killing lobsters, tackling marrowbones and cooking late into the night. Occasionally the diarist instinct overwhelms the generally tight structure and Powell goes on unrelated tangents, but her voice is endearing enough that readers will quickly forgive such lapses. Both home cooks and devotees of Bridget Jones–style dishing will be caught up in Powell's funny, sharp-tongued but generous writing. Agent, Sarah Chalfant. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"A gratifying year spent tackling the art of French cooking....Indulge in this memoir of marrow and butter, knowing there is always a bitter green to balance the taste." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"The tougher the shopping and cooking assignment, the more sensual the experience, as Powell discovers incredible determination and hidden talents in cooking, writing, and living. This is a joyful, humorous account of one woman's efforts to find meaning in her life." Booklist

Review:

"Powell is a talented, funny writer... Julie & Julia [is] a touching, sometimes stomach-turning, and overall delicious read." Johanna Bates, BUST

Synopsis:

Powell needs something to break the monotony of her life. So, she invents a deranged assignment: She will take her mother's dog-eared copy of Julia Child's 1961 classic, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and cook all 524 recipes in the span of just one year.

Synopsis:

Julie and Julia, the bestselling memoir that's irresistible....A kind of Bridget Jones meets The French Chef (Philadelphia Inquirer), is now a major motion picture. Julie Powell, nearing thirty and trapped in a dead-end secretarial job, resolves to reclaim her life by cooking in the span of a single year, every one of the 524 recipes in Julia Child's legendary Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Her unexpected reward: not just a newfound respect for calves' livers and aspic, but a new life-lived with gusto. The film version is written and directed by Nora Ephron and stars Amy Adams as Julie and Meryl Streep as Julia.

Video

About the Author

Born and raised in Austin, Texas, Julie Powell has resided in one place or another in the outer boroughs of New York City for the past eight years. Currently she lives in Long Island City, New York, with her husband, Eric, three cats, and a snake.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

Holly B, July 26, 2011 (view all comments by Holly B)
This is a bit of an odd book. Of course, the premise of a woman in NYC deciding to cook her way through a Julia Child cookbook is well known considering the movie it was made into. The odd thing is that this is a very engaging book which is a memoir by someone who doesn't come across as very likable. You would think the lack of likability would make the book a bit of a slog, but it is mostly quite enjoyable. What makes me sad, though, is that I don't get much of a sense that Julie enjoyed the food she made all that much. Perhaps she did, but the focus is more on her and the process and the food gets lost a bit. She does write well, with moments of terrific humor, which is what saves the book.
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flyarizonaI, February 6, 2010 (view all comments by flyarizonaI)
I liked the concept, like Julia Childs but the movie ruined the book for me. I wish there was more detail about Julia, her life in France, her life before she was married, more character development. A good idea but no huge climaxes, very much predictable plot.
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gaby317, August 1, 2009 (view all comments by gaby317)
Synopsis:
Married and living in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, working as a secretary in an unnamed government agency after a series of dead end jobs, pushing thirty, and having learned that she may have fertility problems, Julie Powell is ready for a change. Inspired by her parents' copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child (MtAoFC), Julie creates a blog and declares her challenge to the universe:

"Government drone by day, renegade foodie by night. Too old for theater, too young for children, and too bitter for anything else, Julie Powell was looking for a challenge. And in the Julie/Julia Project she found it. Risking her marriage, her job, and her cats well-being, she has signed on for a deranged assignment. 365 days. 524 recipes. One girl and a cr@ppy outer borough kitchen. How far will it go, no one can say ...."

Sure enough, the book takes us through the challenges and victories of that year. The culinary ones have an undercurrent of NYC scavenger hunt and discovery, like Julie's first experience with bone marrow: Bifteck Saute Bercy garnished with bone marrow of a cow. The personal challenges and the torments of her low rent apartment meld with the Julie/Julia Project making frozen pipes, water outages, blackouts, and the move to Long Island City, Queens part of a large, mildly hysterical adventure.

Review:
With all the advertisements for the movie coming out and the buzz about this book, you probably know about the Julie/Julia Project and have some impression of the book. Before I began reading, I wondered whether Julie Powell would pull it off. It sounded like a good idea, but would it end up slow or contrived? Annoying? I'm glad to say that I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I wish I'd known more about Julia Child as I read the about the birth of the Julie/Julia Project. My vague recollections of Julia Child meant that this book shaped much of my image of Julia. But this is really isn't a bad thing. Julie's Julia is a funny, practical, generous and adventuresome muse. I've just unearthed and watched a video of the Omelette Show on The French Chef and will surely watch more Julia Child over time.

Julie & Julia captures the flavor of New York so well. It's a light, enjoyable read full of good writing, interesting characters, and unusual dishes. I highly recommend it!
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(10 of 13 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780316044271
Subtitle:
My Year of Cooking Dangerously
Author:
Powell, Julie
Author:
Shulman, Audrey
Publisher:
Back Bay Books
Subject:
Cooking
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Women cooks
Subject:
Cookery, french
Subject:
Biography-Cooking
Subject:
Biography - General
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Cakes
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Publication Date:
20090701
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
60 color illustrations
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8 x 7 in

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Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously (Movie Tie-in) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Back Bay Books - English 9780316044271 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Finally, someone willing to admit just how dirty a kitchen can get! Powell's story is at once a comic tale of struggling to find one's balance in the adult world, and a witty exploration of why — and how — we cook. Gastronomes, as well as those more inclined to order take-out, will enjoy Powell's down-and-dirty journey into French cuisine, but her depiction of America is the secret ingredient that holds the whole recipe together. A nourishing read if you love to cook or would rather stay out of the kitchen altogether.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Powell became an Internet celebrity with her 2004 blog chronicling her yearlong odyssey of cooking every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. A frustrated secretary in New York City, Powell embarked on 'the Julie/Julia project' to find a sense of direction, and both the cooking and the writing quickly became all-consuming. Some passages in the book are taken verbatim from the blog, but Powell expands on her experience and gives generous background about her personal life: her doting husband, wacky friends, evil co-workers. She also includes some comments from her 'bleaders' (blog readers), who formed an enthusiastic support base. Powell never met Julia Child (who died last year), but the venerable chef's spirit is present throughout, and Powell imaginatively reconstructs episodes from Child's life in the 1940s. Her writing is feisty and unrestrained, especially as she details killing lobsters, tackling marrowbones and cooking late into the night. Occasionally the diarist instinct overwhelms the generally tight structure and Powell goes on unrelated tangents, but her voice is endearing enough that readers will quickly forgive such lapses. Both home cooks and devotees of Bridget Jones–style dishing will be caught up in Powell's funny, sharp-tongued but generous writing. Agent, Sarah Chalfant. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "A gratifying year spent tackling the art of French cooking....Indulge in this memoir of marrow and butter, knowing there is always a bitter green to balance the taste."
"Review" by , "The tougher the shopping and cooking assignment, the more sensual the experience, as Powell discovers incredible determination and hidden talents in cooking, writing, and living. This is a joyful, humorous account of one woman's efforts to find meaning in her life."
"Review" by , "Powell is a talented, funny writer... Julie & Julia [is] a touching, sometimes stomach-turning, and overall delicious read."
"Synopsis" by , Powell needs something to break the monotony of her life. So, she invents a deranged assignment: She will take her mother's dog-eared copy of Julia Child's 1961 classic, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and cook all 524 recipes in the span of just one year.
"Synopsis" by , Julie and Julia, the bestselling memoir that's irresistible....A kind of Bridget Jones meets The French Chef (Philadelphia Inquirer), is now a major motion picture. Julie Powell, nearing thirty and trapped in a dead-end secretarial job, resolves to reclaim her life by cooking in the span of a single year, every one of the 524 recipes in Julia Child's legendary Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Her unexpected reward: not just a newfound respect for calves' livers and aspic, but a new life-lived with gusto. The film version is written and directed by Nora Ephron and stars Amy Adams as Julie and Meryl Streep as Julia.

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