Recipe for a Charmed Life

Berkley. Jan. 2024. 384p. ISBN 9780593440216. pap. $17. F
Set in a bucolic corner of Friday Harbor, WA, and the glittering culinary scene of Paris, Linden’s (The Magic of Lemon Drop Pie) newest follows chef Georgia May Jackson as she discovers her heart’s true desire. Abandoned by her mother and having grown up in a family that tended toward coldness, Georgia knows a few things in her bones: Julia Child will always answer the questions Georgia poses in her head; her dishes sometimes have a magic she does not understand; it’s her destiny to run a Paris restaurant; and four-leaf clovers have special power. When Georgia loses her job in Paris, and her ability to taste anything but bitter flavors, she decides to reply to an email from her long-lost mother and flies to see her in Friday Harbor. There, in a tiny cottage with a thriving garden, alongside a man facing his own bitterness, she finds answers deep in her family history to questions she never knew to ask.
VERDICT With delicate touches of magical realism and an abiding sense of comfort, Linden offers a gentle hug of a story. Suggest to fans of Sarah Addison Allen.
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