Author: Carly Ellen Kramer
Publisher: CEK, 2014
I like to think of myself as something of foodie and a home chef. I have interests in food history, learning about the art of cooking, and advocating for fair distribution of food throughout the world and healthy food choices. I enjoy reading various food blogs and I especially enjoy the blog Crowded Earth Kitchen, as the author’s viewpoints closely mirror my own. I was pleased to hear that the author of CEK was to release her own novel, How To Bake A Chocolate Soufflé. Food and books, my two favorite things – what could be better than a food novel? I posted about my excitement here on Cross Country Reading, and I was thrilled to receive a copy of the book in return.
I will be honest, though. As much as I love food, foodie fiction is a new genre to me. Usually I stick to cookbooks and chef biographies. The one I read, by author Dana Bate was good, but perhaps a bit too reminiscent of a rom-com for my taste. How to Bake a Chocolate Soufflé, however, takes on a much more sophisticated tone. It is really hard not to love. The plot is told through the view of three women, all very different, but who share a past with one another. Between the scenes of love, heartbreak, howling laughter, and lust, Kramer intersperses various recipes — all connected to the book’s plot They appear after the end of a chapter, and do not at all distract from the story or the well rounded characters. The characters are relatable in every way, even the secondary characters are full and written fantastically. I spent most of my time reading How to Bake a Chocolate Soufflé next to the fire with a glass of wine; it is a feel-good-page-turner full of fun characters, flirty interactions, and heartwarming moments. I would recommend this book for the laughs and warm tones alone.
Striving to be more than just another feel-good book, Kramer intricately weaves the storyline with relevant commentary on womanhood, the struggle for equality, and the balance between one’s life and one’s lifework. I find it to be an enjoyable read, and also a poignant look at various challenges what women face in the 21st century. I recommend How to Bake a Chocolate Soufflé to fiction lovers aged 16 and up.
Next up: I am back in my food book comfort zone with Who Put The Beef In Wellington?
Posted by: Janine Reads