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The Cookbook Collector

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The Cookbook Collector Cover

ISBN13: 9780385340854
ISBN10: 0385340850
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Staff Pick

The Cookbook Collector is the lovely, unusual story of two very different sisters creating their lives at the end of the 20th century. Allegra Goodman has outdone herself with this funny, complex, rich, and rewarding new novel. Readers who enjoy fiction about books and bookstores will especially appreciate it.
Recommended by Tessa, Powells.com

Review-A-Day

"Everything is rising or falling in The Cookbook Collector: internet stocks, the value of old books, men in love, women out of redwoods, and twin towers. Although Random House advertises it as Sense and Sensibility for the digital age, it is more a novel of ideas than of characters. Goodman's first two books, The Family Markowitz and Kaaterskill Falls, were thickly settled works of domestic fiction. Her last two, Intuition and The Cookbook Collector, are concerned with the worlds of work as well. In scope and theme, she is more Dickensian, though she remains, like Austen, concerned with love, friendship, and the difference between the two. Goodman delves into women's private lives in this novel, but with well-nigh manly scope, she also goes public." Anne Trubek, Jewish Review of Books (read the entire National Book Critic's Circle review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Heralded as "a modern day Jane Austen" by USA Today, National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author Allegra Goodman has compelled and delighted hundreds of thousands of readers. Now, in her most ambitious work yet, Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment.

Emily and Jessamine Bach are opposites in every way: Twenty-eight-year-old Emily is the CEO of Veritech, twenty-three-year-old Jess is an environmental activist and graduate student in philosophy. Pragmatic Emily is making a fortune in Silicon Valley, romantic Jess works in an antiquarian bookstore. Emily is rational and driven, while Jess is dreamy and whimsical. Emily's boyfriend, Jonathan, is fantastically successful. Jess's boyfriends, not so much — as her employer George points out in what he hopes is a completely disinterested way.

Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, The Cookbook Collector is a novel about getting and spending, and about the substitutions we make when we can't find what we're looking for: reading cookbooks instead of cooking, speculating instead of creating, collecting instead of living. But above all it is about holding on to what is real in a virtual world: love that stays.

Review:

"If any contemporary author deserves to wear the mantel of Jane Austen, it's Goodman, whose subtle, astute social comedies perfectly capture the quirks of human nature. This dazzling novel is Austen updated for the dot-com era, played out between 1999 and 2001 among a group of brilliant risk takers and truth seekers. Still in her 20s, Emily Bach is the CEO of Veritech, a Web-based data-storage startup in trendy Berkeley. Her boyfriend, charismatic Jonathan Tilghman, is in a race to catch up at his data-security company, ISIS, in Cambridge, Mass. Emily is low-key, pragmatic, kind, serene — the polar opposite of her beloved younger sister, Jess, a crazed postgrad who works at an antiquarian bookstore owned by a retired Microsoft millionaire. When Emily confides her company's new secret project to Jonathan as a proof of her love, the stage is set for issues of loyalty and trust, greed, and the allure of power. What is actually valuable, Goodman's characters ponder: a company's stock, a person's promise, a forest of redwoods, a collection of rare cookbooks? Goodman creates a bubble of suspense as both Veritech and ISIS issue IPOs, career paths collide, social values clash, ironies multiply, and misjudgments threaten to destroy romantic desire. Enjoyable and satisfying, this is Goodman's (Intuition) most robust, fully realized and trenchantly meaningful work yet." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Do these folks sound like types? They absolutely are not. Goodman is remarkably successful in creating rich, engaging characters and a complex story of love and identity that reads like life itself. Highly recommended." Library Journal (starred review)

Review:

"Fans of Goodman's lovely, nuanced novels have a treat in store with this tale of two sisters." Entertainment Weekly

Synopsis:

Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare-book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment. Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, this work is about getting and spending, and about the substitutions one must make.

Synopsis:

Heralded as “a modern day Jane Austen” by USA Today, National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author Allegra Goodman has compelled and delighted hundreds of thousands of readers. Now, in her most ambitious work yet, Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment.

Emily and Jessamine Bach are opposites in every way: Twenty-eight-year-old Emily is the CEO of Veritech, twenty-three-year-old Jess is an environmental activist and graduate student in philosophy. Pragmatic Emily is making a fortune in Silicon Valley, romantic Jess works in an antiquarian bookstore. Emily is rational and driven, while Jess is dreamy and whimsical. Emily’s boyfriend, Jonathan, is fantastically successful. Jess’s boyfriends, not so much—as her employer George points out in what he hopes is a completely disinterested way.

Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, The Cookbook Collector is a novel about getting and spending, and about the substitutions we make when we can’t find what we’re looking for: reading cookbooks instead of cooking, speculating instead of creating, collecting instead of living. But above all it is about holding on to what is real in a virtual world: love that stays.

About the Author

Allegra Goodman's novels include Intuition and Kaaterskill Falls. Her fiction has appeared in The New Yorker and Best American Short Stories. She is a winner of the Whiting Writer’s Award and a fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. She lives with her family in Cambridge, Massachusetts. For more information, visit www.AllegraGoodman.com or become a fan on Facebook.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

Rachel Coker, March 3, 2011 (view all comments by Rachel Coker)
A beautiful book with fully formed characters, diverse plot lines and honest reflections on the lives of women in their 20s. It's hard to explain how, but Allegra Goodman manages to weave in bits about high-tech start-ups, Jewish philosophy, rare books and extreme environmentalism, along with a dash of East Coast vs. West Coast elitism. There's romance, yes, but also plenty of action. I found the ending just a tad too fast, but this is one heck of a novel.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(9 of 19 readers found this comment helpful)
john kendall, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by john kendall)
I loved the alternating points of view, especially while I was listening to the unabridged version of the book on my iPod.

Goodman also captures the distinct climate of the country a mere ten years ago, just before the 9/11 terrorist attack, and personalizes how an event of this magnitude affects individuals. I thought of how Dickens used the same concept with the French Revolution in "A Tale of Two Cities."
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(9 of 19 readers found this comment helpful)
Lissa Elhindi, January 1, 2011 (view all comments by Lissa Elhindi)
I lvoed this book
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(9 of 18 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780385340854
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Goodman, Allegra
Publisher:
The Dial Press
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
California
Subject:
Sisters
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Publication Date:
20100706
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
416
Dimensions:
9.40x6.40x1.38 in. 1.43 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

The Cookbook Collector Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.95 In Stock
Product details 416 pages Dial Press - English 9780385340854 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

The Cookbook Collector is the lovely, unusual story of two very different sisters creating their lives at the end of the 20th century. Allegra Goodman has outdone herself with this funny, complex, rich, and rewarding new novel. Readers who enjoy fiction about books and bookstores will especially appreciate it.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "If any contemporary author deserves to wear the mantel of Jane Austen, it's Goodman, whose subtle, astute social comedies perfectly capture the quirks of human nature. This dazzling novel is Austen updated for the dot-com era, played out between 1999 and 2001 among a group of brilliant risk takers and truth seekers. Still in her 20s, Emily Bach is the CEO of Veritech, a Web-based data-storage startup in trendy Berkeley. Her boyfriend, charismatic Jonathan Tilghman, is in a race to catch up at his data-security company, ISIS, in Cambridge, Mass. Emily is low-key, pragmatic, kind, serene — the polar opposite of her beloved younger sister, Jess, a crazed postgrad who works at an antiquarian bookstore owned by a retired Microsoft millionaire. When Emily confides her company's new secret project to Jonathan as a proof of her love, the stage is set for issues of loyalty and trust, greed, and the allure of power. What is actually valuable, Goodman's characters ponder: a company's stock, a person's promise, a forest of redwoods, a collection of rare cookbooks? Goodman creates a bubble of suspense as both Veritech and ISIS issue IPOs, career paths collide, social values clash, ironies multiply, and misjudgments threaten to destroy romantic desire. Enjoyable and satisfying, this is Goodman's (Intuition) most robust, fully realized and trenchantly meaningful work yet." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review A Day" by , "Everything is rising or falling in The Cookbook Collector: internet stocks, the value of old books, men in love, women out of redwoods, and twin towers. Although Random House advertises it as Sense and Sensibility for the digital age, it is more a novel of ideas than of characters. Goodman's first two books, The Family Markowitz and Kaaterskill Falls, were thickly settled works of domestic fiction. Her last two, Intuition and The Cookbook Collector, are concerned with the worlds of work as well. In scope and theme, she is more Dickensian, though she remains, like Austen, concerned with love, friendship, and the difference between the two. Goodman delves into women's private lives in this novel, but with well-nigh manly scope, she also goes public." Anne Trubek, Jewish Review of Books (read the entire National Book Critic's Circle review)
"Review" by , "Do these folks sound like types? They absolutely are not. Goodman is remarkably successful in creating rich, engaging characters and a complex story of love and identity that reads like life itself. Highly recommended."
"Review" by , "Fans of Goodman's lovely, nuanced novels have a treat in store with this tale of two sisters."
"Synopsis" by , Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare-book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment. Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, this work is about getting and spending, and about the substitutions one must make.
"Synopsis" by , Heralded as “a modern day Jane Austen” by USA Today, National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author Allegra Goodman has compelled and delighted hundreds of thousands of readers. Now, in her most ambitious work yet, Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment.

Emily and Jessamine Bach are opposites in every way: Twenty-eight-year-old Emily is the CEO of Veritech, twenty-three-year-old Jess is an environmental activist and graduate student in philosophy. Pragmatic Emily is making a fortune in Silicon Valley, romantic Jess works in an antiquarian bookstore. Emily is rational and driven, while Jess is dreamy and whimsical. Emily’s boyfriend, Jonathan, is fantastically successful. Jess’s boyfriends, not so much—as her employer George points out in what he hopes is a completely disinterested way.

Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, The Cookbook Collector is a novel about getting and spending, and about the substitutions we make when we can’t find what we’re looking for: reading cookbooks instead of cooking, speculating instead of creating, collecting instead of living. But above all it is about holding on to what is real in a virtual world: love that stays.

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