Saturday, July 11, 2015

Book Review: Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradel

This book chronicles the life of Eva Thorvald, a woman who becomes one of the greatest chef's in the country that runs a pop up dinner night. Only one short part of the story is told from Eva's point of view; most of the story is told from the point of view of people she interacts with and not always people she interacts with in a very direct way, like the mother of an old high school boyfriend that enters a baking contest where Eva is a judge. This allows the book to make some statements about food and dining as well. 

To me the most interesting things in the book are the day to day lives of the characters. The author does a great job showing all the different personalities and lives of various characters. I wanted to know more about everybody and sometimes was sad that I didn't get to learn more about what happened to various characters. The character that remains the most elusive by the end is Eva herself as the narrators become further removed from Eva's day to day personal life. I know this book is supposed to be all about the food and there is definitely a lot said here about foodie culture and cooking and it's definitely interesting in that respect, but what really made this an enjoyable for me was the people.

The advanced readers copy was sent to my library by the publisher.

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