Celebrating Food Fiction
Louisa Edwards and friends celebrated the release of Edwards’s debut novel, Can’t Stand the Heat, at Blue Hill in New York City on September 25. St. Martin’s published the book—about what happens when a sharp-tongued food critic writes an exposé about a hotshot chef while trying to hide the fact that she herself has no idea how to cook—on September 1. Edwards is pictured here with her editor, Rose Hilliard. The second book in Edwards’s Recipe for Love series, On the Steamy Side, is due out in March 2009. (Photo: Jeanne Devlin.)

Frugal Foodies
On September 26th, Chronicle Books marketing manager Lara Starr—who is also author of The Party Girl Cookbook—hosted a party for The Frugal Foodie Cookbook: Waste-Not Recipes for the Wise Cook (Viva Editions) by Starr and Lynette Rohrer Shirk in San Rafael, Calif. The event was also a fundraiser for the Marin Community Food Bank. Book Passage of Corte Madera provided the books for the event. Pictured, left to right, are Starr, Viva associate publisher Brenda Knight, and their friend Daphne Philips.

Reichl Stays Busy with Gourmet Today; Cookbook Club to Close
In the wake of the closure of Gourmet, Ruth Reichl, who spoke with PW in August, is keeping busy promoting the recently released Gourmet Today (Houghton Mifflin). She visited Kansas City last week for a dinner at Starker's Restaurant, where the chef served a five-course meal with recipes from the book. Houghton publicity manager Alia Habib said that despite the magazine's shutting down, book sales are off to a brisk start. Reichl will appear on NPR's Fresh Air this Wednesday, October 14, to discuss the present and future of food journalism, her tenure at Gourmet and the new cookbook. Unfortunately, Gourmet's Cookbook Club has been discontinued along with the magazine, managing editor Larry Karol told PW. The last selection will be My Bread by Jim Lahey, which will appear in the November issue.

Drinks and Sweets
Friends and colleagues toasted James Beard Award-winning pastry chef Karen DeMasco with cocktails and sweets for her new book, The Craft of Baking: Cakes, Cookies, and Other Sweets with Ideas for Inventing Your Own (Clarkson Potter), coauthored with Mindy Fox, on September 29. The party was held at Locanda Verde in Manhattan.

This story originally appeared in Cooking the Books, PW's e-newsletter for cookbooks.