Narratives with Recipes!

Enjoy a good book and try a new homemade treat with these novels and biographies that delve into the culinary world!

Meet Me at the Cupcake Café by Jenny Colgan is a heartwarming story of Issy Randall realizing her dream of opening a café. Growing up with her Grandpa Joe, who ran several bakeries, baking was in her blood. So, after being laid off from her job, she decided to turn to what she knew how to do best.

Don’t forget to check out the next book in the series: Christmas at the Cupcake Cafe. Jenny Colgan has many other culinary-themed fiction novels to check out from other series as well, and they are also available to download on hoopla. 

My Life in France by Julia Child is the fascinating autobiography of Julia Child, a tall girl from Pasadena, California who we know as the celebrated French Chef from her PBS cooking show and her cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, which she wrote with Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle. It is an endearing story about how she met and fell in love with her husband, Paul Child, who worked as a diplomat. They had to travel to France for his work, and with the desire to learn how to cook for her husband and falling in love with the cuisine of France, Julia was inspired to take courses at Cordon Bleu Cooking School. The rest is history.

Julie and Julia became a movie, directed by Nora Ephron and starring Meryl Streep, based on the books My Life in France and Julie Powell’s memoir, Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen. It won a Golden Globe Award. Powell’s book chronicles the year of embarking on a project to cook a recipe from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking every day for a year. Frustrated with her job as a secretary, this cooking project and the successful blog she writes about it gives her a whole new direction in life. Check out the ebook on Overdrive or the audiobook on hoopla.

Ann Mah’s impressive travelogue, Mastering the Art of French Eating: Lessons in Food and Love From a Year in Paris, details the regional food of France as she travels the country. Stationed in France with her husband, who is a diplomat, Ann Mah researches the traditional food of France, referencing the work of Julia Child. Ann Mah is a writer for The New York Times travel section, a journalist, and a novelist.

Lavender Blue Murder by Laura Childs is 21st in the Tea Shop Mysteries featuring Theodosia Browning, proprietor of Indigo Tea Shop. Prolific writer Laura Childs’ cozy series is set in Charleston, South Carolina. There are likeable regular characters, recipes, and, of course, a mystery to solve. Attending an English-style game bird hunt with her friend Drayton, there is a murder of the host who has been shot and his widow presses Theodosa to help solve the crime despite Theodosia’s detective boyfriend, Pete Riley, wanting her to stear clear of the investigation.

Lavendar Blue Murder can be found as an ebook and audiobook. There are more titles from the series accessible in Overdrive. Check out the full series in NoveList here. The first book in the series is Death by Darjeeling.

Coconut Layer Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke is the 25th book in the popular Hannah Swensen Mystery series, so there are many volumes to enjoy for new fans. This cozy mystery is set in Lake Eden, Minnesota. Hannah Swensen owns a bakery shop, The Cookie Jar, and finds herself solving mysteries on the side. In Coconut Layer Cake Murder, Hannah tries to go on vacation with her mother to California when her sisters’s boyfriend is suddenly a suspect in a murder case of an old high school friend. Hannah also has to move in with her old love interest, Norman Rhodes. Recipes, of course, are included!

You can see the list of the Hannah Swensen Mystery series in NoveList with your library card. The first volume in the series is the Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder. There are titles also available to download by Joanne Fluke from hoopla.

Summer Love: Noteworthy Love Stories of May and June 2020

Summer is the season of love, and the Abbot Public Library has over 25 new and upcoming titles to suit all of your summer romance needs! Whether you’re a fan of historical fiction, suspense, thriller, fantasy, humor, or a combination of it all, we have the best stories for you to fall in love with.

If you’re looking for a good laugh, the recently released title Not That Kind of Guy by Andie J. Christopher has plot elements from The Proposal and Crazy Rich Asians with a strong heroine. 

In Beach Read by Emily Henry, two polar opposites have only a few things in common: for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block. 

In Alli Frank & Asha Youmans’ Tiny Imperfections, The Devil Wears Prada meets Class Mom in this novel of love, money, and misbehaving parents.

In Sajni Patel’s The Trouble with Hating You, a strong-willed and proudly single engineer walks out when her parents set her up with a lawyer — but when work brings them together again, she just might give love a second chance. 

Mary Alice Monroe is back with book 6 of her Beach House series. On Ocean Boulevard reunites the Rutledge family in Isle of Palms for love, tradition, and tragedy.

In Real Men Knit by Kwana Jackson, four brothers struggle to keep open the doors of their adoptive mother’s beloved Harlem knitting shop after she suddenly dies. Follow the heart-breaker son, Jesse, as he tries to prove to part-time shop employee, Kerry, that he can be her forever and always man. 

From the author of Pride, Prejudice, and Other Flavors, Sonali Dev brings her newest, Recipe for Persuasion – another clever, deeply layered, and heartwarming romantic comedy that follows in Jane Austen’s tradition.

We see even more romances coming this June!

500 Miles from You: A Novel by Jenny Colgan

Lissa is a nurse in a gritty, hectic London neighborhood who struggles with PTSD. Her supervisor quietly arranges for her to spend a few months doing a much less demanding job in the little town of Kirrinfeif in the Scottish Highlands, hoping that the change of scenery will help her heal. Lissa will be swapping places with Cormack, an Army veteran who’s Kirrinfeif’s easygoing nurse/paramedic/all-purpose medical man.

What will happen when Lissa and Cormack finally meet?

Always the Last to Know by Kristan Higgins

The Frosts are a typical American family. Barb and John, married almost fifty years, are testy and bored with each other…who could blame them after all this time? At least they have their daughters– Barb’s favorite, the perfect, brilliant Juliet; and John’s darling, the free-spirited Sadie. The girls themselves couldn’t be more different, but at least they got along, more or less. It was fine. It was enough.

Until the day John had a stroke, and their house of cards came tumbling down.

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

Samiah Brooks never thought she would be “that” girl. But a live tweet of a horrific date just revealed the painful truth: she’s been catfished by a three-timing jerk of a boyfriend. Suddenly Samiah-along with his two other “girlfriends,” London and Taylor-have gone viral online. Now the three new besties are making a pact to spend the next six months investing in themselves. No men and no dating.

Then she meets the deliciously sexy Daniel Collins at work. What are the chances? But is Daniel really boyfriend material or is he maybe just a little too good to be true?

Dance Away with Me: A Novel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

When life throws her one setback too many, midwife and young widow Tess Hartsong takes off for Runaway Mountain to outrun her heartbreak and find the solace she needs to heal. But instead of peace and quiet, she encounters an enigmatic artist with a craving for solitude, a fairy-tale sprite with too many secrets, a helpless infant, a passel of curious teens, and a town suspicious of outsiders, especially one as headstrong as Tess. Just as headstrong is Ian North, a difficult, gifted man with a tortured soul—a man who makes Tess question everything. 

In running away to this new life, Tess wonders— Has she lost herself… or has she found her future? 

Last Tang Standing by Lauren Ho

At thirty-three, Andrea Tang is living the dream: She has a successful career as a lawyer, a posh condo, and a clutch of fun-loving friends who are always in the know about Singapore’s hottest clubs. But – she’s about to become the lone unmarried member of her generation in the Tang clan. Andrea then decides to give the charming, wealthy entrepreneur Eric Deng a chance while her office rival, Suresh Aditparan, keeps throwing a wrench in her plans. Now Andrea can’t help but wonder: In the endless tug-of-war between pleasing others and pleasing herself, is there room for everyone to win?

The Lost Diary of Venice: A Novel by Margaux DeRoux

In the wake of her father’s death, Rose Newlin finds solace in her work as a book restorer. Then, one rainy Connecticut afternoon, a struggling painter appears at her door. William Lomazzo brings with him a sixteenth-century treatise on art, which Rose quickly identifies as a palimpsest: a document written over a hidden diary that had purposely been scraped away. Yet the restoration sparks an unforeseen challenge when William—a married man—and Rose experience an instant, unspoken attraction.

Sisters and Secrets: A Novel by Jennifer Ryan

There’s nothing more complicated than the relationship among family, especially when the Silva Sisters are keeping secrets. As the secrets between Sierra, Amy, and Heather are revealed, each realizes that there is more to their family than meets the eye… and forgiveness may be the only way to move forward and reclaim true happiness at last.