August 7, 2010

Review: Simply from Scratch by Alicia Bessette

Alicia Bessette writes with compassion and tenderness to illuminate the many unexpected ways people save each others lives every day often without even knowing it. Poignant, bittersweet, and strikingly honest, Simply from Scratch is a radiant celebration of friendship and the strength of the human spirit.

Rose-Ellen ( Zell ) Carmichael Roy wears her late husband Nick s camouflage apron even when she s not in the kitchen. That s her widow style.

It s been over a year since Nick died tragically during a post-Katrina relief mission in New Orleans. Long enough, according to the grief pamphlets, to have begun to move on with her life. But Zell is still unable to enter her attic, which is full of Nick memories. She hasn t even turned on her oven because cooking was Nick s chore. That is, until she decides to enter the first annual
Desserts that Warm the Soul baking contest, hoping to donate the grand prize to Katrina survivors in Nick s memory.
Meanwhile, Zell s nine-year-old neighbor, Ingrid Knox, is learning to cope with the loneliness of growing up without a mother. With an imagination as big as her heart, Ingrid treasures her doting father but begins to plot how she will meet the woman who abandoned her so many years ago. When an embarrassing baking mishap brings Zell and Ingrid together, they form an unlikely friendship that will alter both of their lives forever. Together, and with the help of a lively and loveable cast of friends and family, Zell and Ingrid embark on winning the
Desserts that Warm the Soul contest -- and learn that through the many sorrows and joys of life, with a little bit of flour and a pinch of love, anything is possible.

Simply From Scratch is a heart-wrenching and intriguing all at the same time.  Grieving for her husband, Zell is the type of character that you can't help but get attached to.  Alicia's writing and attention to detail is superb. 

Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
August 5, 2010
304 pages
$25.95 US

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions expressed are 100% mine.  If you purchase a book using my Amazon or Barnes and Noble link, I will receive a small portion of the purchase price.

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Jane Jeffress Thomas said...

I think I might have posted in the wrong place. I am a follower.

Heather said...

I "liked" Alicia on Facebook and I am a follower. Thanks for the chance to win!
ra6352 (at) gmail (dot) com

Colleen Turner said...

This book sounds so good. Cooking and eating often help soothe someone from heartache, so I could see how this would make a good centerpiece to a book about a woman learning how to live past grief.

holdenj said...

I like the cover--the story sounds like it could be very emotional, but good. Thanks for the info!

Linda Kish said...

It sounds like a wonderful love story between Zell and the young Ingrid...something they both need.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Ruthie said...

Funny how cooking solves all the problems of the world.

Coupon Clippin' Mommy said...

This book looks like it would be perfect for me!

couponclippinmommy at yahoo dot com

debbie said...

It sounds like a touching story. I like how the characters interact to help each other.

Bethie said...

Sounds like the characters are interesting. I love a character driven story.

AmandaSue said...

This sounds like a real heart-warming story, its never easy coping with losing a loved one but i think the main character finds a great way to move on. Sounds like a great book.

allisonsbj3 said...

I love the cover!


Isi and Jas' mom said...

Nick sounds like my husband, who is the cook of my house,lol

apple blossom said...

Sounds like an interesting book. Thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Mystica said...

Sounds like a heart breaking story with a nice ending (I hope)

Suzy said...

Wow, what a heartbreaker! This book sounds like it would definitely bring tears to my eyes because it sounds really heartfelt and full of emotion. This sounds like a tender story, I like it.

Esme said...

What a sad yet lovely book.

Kayla said...

I'll definitely have to bring my tissues if I read this book!

Thanks for the review!

Anonymous said...

Hopefully, I'm not too late.