As Always, Julia: Letters Between Julia Child and Avis DeVoto: Food, Friendship and the Making of a Masterpiece

Joan Reardon, Editor
Edited by Joan Reardon, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $26 (448p) ISBN 978-0-547-41771-4
Reviewed on: 10/11/2010
Release date: 12/01/2010
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-89628-4
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Culinary historian Reardon's collection of the correspondence between Child and her pen pal, Avis DeVoto (portrayed in the film Julie & Julia by Deborah Rush), bubbles over with intimate insights into their friendship. In 1952, Child was living in Paris when she wrote to Cambridge, Mass., historian Bernard DeVoto after reading his Harper's article about knives. Her letter was answered by his wife, Avis, who soon became her confidante, sounding board, and enthusiastic fellow cook. The two met finally met in person two years later. As a part of the publishing community, Avis (who died in 1989) was responsible for securing the publication of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, steering the book first to Houghton Mifflin and then to its eventual home at Knopf. Their letters span a wide range of topics, from cookbooks, menus, recipes, and restaurants to Balzac, sex, goose stuffing, gardening, learning languages, the political climate, Sunday afternoon cocktail parties, and proofreading. Witty, enlightening and entertaining, these letters serve as a compelling companion volume to Mastering the Art of French Cooking. (Dec. 1)
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