Out to Lunch by Stacey Ballis

lunchThe last Stacey Ballis book I read was back in 2007. I don’t know how, over the past seven years, I haven’t bothered to read any of her newer books, especially since they (apparently) all have to do with food and have recipes in them (something I love.) Anyway, when I saw she had a new book coming out I put it on hold and was surprised and delighted by the food aspect of it. I’ll be honest-I wasn’t sure at first I was liking this book. I certainly had a hard time relating to someone my age who has been so insanely successful that now she’s a semi-retired multimillionaire who maintains a specialty cookbook store basically just for fun and to indulge her chef likes. Jenna achieved all this success with her very best friend since college, Aimee, who is now dead. She and Aimee were so much partners that her death is like losing a spouse.  Aimee actually had a husband, Wayne, who Jenna simply never liked. But now Aimee’s will stipulates that Jenna have financial stewardship over Wayne so that they have to spend a lot of time together and hopefully Jenna will learn what Aimee saw in him. Throughout the novel Jenna hears Aimee’s voice talking to her all the time, so you do get a sense of Aimee as a person, even though she’s gone.  It was funny, heartwarming, and the food descriptions were completely mouthwatering.  The luxury and wealth (you don’t cook and eat like that on a budget) were somewhat astonishing to me.  And of course it turns out that the comic book geeks are also insanely successful millionaires, which all made it seem a bit too much to me.  That said, I enjoyed this and absolutely want to copy some of the recipes down.

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