Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Julia and Avis

Looking for a good summer read? I've been enjoying the letters between Julia Child and Avis DeVoto, compiled in As Always, Julia. It is fascinating to see how their transatlantic friendship grows thanks to the quality of their writing and the depth of their intellect. Filled with references to the McCarthy trials of the 1950's, the process of creating Child's materpiece of a cookbook, and even where to find the right kind of onion, the book provides an insight into the era and into a friendship. It makes me miss letter writing-- for who will compile a series of emails in the same way?
Child's newfound popularity is no surprise to those who have read her memoir, My Life in France. The book is a passionate recount of her evolution from OSS member to supreme foodie. In our world of increasing electronica, the physical sensations inherent in cooking are clearly a draw. And yet it is Julia's irrepressible nature that catpivates us all. She grabs life with both hands, takes on challenges with gusto, and surrounds herself with people who do the same.

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