Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday's at the Piedmont Grille

On Today's Menu -- Three books I loved that I think you should read too.



Michelle Davidson Argyle's TRUE COLORS

As a former private chef, I would use food to create my art. Pairing flavor with texture, color and aroma, my canvas was a testimony to my love of gastronomic delight. Michelle Davidson Argylle’s TRUE COLORS And Other Short Stories borrows from my kitchen. Her mastery of the English language is like indulging in the finest seven-course meal. The subtle word play, combined with deliberate description, made me long for a nice glass of wine to accompany every page. Every story adds a new flavor, a new dimension to taste, which compliment each other. There are no mistakes in this menu, and after reading each selection, you want to sit back and savor everything you’ve read before cleansing your palette and beginning the next course. Tart, tangy, sweet, savory, TRUE COLORS is a testimony of her love for the written word. I cannot wait for more from her literary kitchen.


Anne R. Allen's FOOD OF LOVE

What do an overweight Princess, an African-American Baptist minister, a nuclear bomb, UFOs, a pornographic movie producer, Mickey Mouse and Elvis have in common? They are all intertwined in Anne R. Allen’s new book – FOOD OF LOVE.


While the main plot revolves around someone trying to kill Princess Regina, the story is truly told in flashback diary scenes, which take us back to the 60’s counterculture and what happens to two foster sisters, one white, one black, growing up in Boston.

From the book: Andy Warhol had been right about one thing. Everybody wanted their fifteen minutes of fame. These days, everybody had to imagine they were in the middle of some movie. They couldn’t face the fact that some lives are ordinary. Not everybody gets to play Carnegie Hall.

In FOOD OF LOVE the characters are larger than life, so over the top that you couldn’t imagine them being real. However, Allen perfects the art of characterization so that their struggles with weight, with love, with acceptance, and forgiveness show us that we all share the same human commonalities, whether black, white, young, old, rich or poor. Even if you do live in star-studded fame and fortune, we all share the same desires and set-backs.

I loved this book, it was such a genre filled mix – romance, thriller, spy-capade – the only downfall, I couldn’t read it in one sitting. Allen’s snarky humor shines on every page, and her not-so-subtle pokes at Hollywood’s rich and famous made me laugh out loud, especially when Elvis leaves the building.

This is Allen’s first book that I’ve read, and with so many more out, I can’t wait to sink my teeth into all of them. FOOD OF LOVE is the first in a long line of successes for Anne R. Allen.


Les Edgerton's JUST LIKE THAT


This is a man's book. No doubt about it. A semi-autobiographical tale written in fiction form of his life and travels as a criminal. I couldn't put it down. I never thought I would root for a protagonist that was on the lowest edge of society, but I couldn't help feel for Jake. His antics with his friends, in and out of the pokey, were some of the best fun I've read in a long time. Edgerton's writing is raw, plain and simple, and if you can't look at the seedier side of life, pass this book by. However, what I found in reading is that even the lowliest of people have feelings. The emotional integrity with which Edgerton shows us that Jake is a PERSON, a son, a friend, a lover, bring two lessons that are easily defined. Most people are not who they appear to be, and everyone deserves a second chance. Les Edgerton has come a long way from his past and with this book, only Blue Skies are sure to be ahead of him.

I hope you'll all give any and all of these books a try.

Have a great weekend!

21 comments:

Sarah Pearson said...

Two of these are already on my list, and I've just added the third :-)

Anne Gallagher said...

Thanks Sarah, you won't be disappointed with any of them.

Rula Sinara said...

They sound like fantastic choices. I'll have to check them out.

Jennifer Shirk said...

That was great. I love hearing about books people have enjoyed. Thanks.
And have a great weekend!

Matthew MacNish said...

I don't know the second two, but Michelle is awesome!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I know two of those authors!

Em-Musing said...

Thanks Anne,always love recommendations.

Anne Gallagher said...

Thanks for stopping by everyone. I probably should have put up links, but didn't think of it.

Every one of these books is totally awesome and if you have the chance to read, I know you won't be disappointed. Each are so unique, it's like a Christmas present.

Sarah Ahiers said...

there was too much discussion of food in this post and now i'm STARVING!!

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Wow, I am honored to be on this list. Thank you! Anne's book is on my list. I will add the third. Thank you for the recommendations, Anne. :)

Linda G. said...

Nice menu selections! I haven't read any of these yet--nice to know they're all good reads.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Great reviews, all the way around. These will all definitely go on my (looooong) reading list. Thank you, ma'am.

Liza said...

Thanks for the reviews. Putting Anne Allen on the reading list.

Lydia Kang said...

Thank you for the reviews and suggestions. :) Have a great weekend!

Carol Kilgore said...

Interesting books. Thanks for the reviews.

Donna Hole said...

Great write-ups Anne. They sound intriguing. I know I'll enjoy all three.

.......dhole

Les Edgerton said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed the read,
Anne--your opinion means the world to me. I just saw this--yesterday, I went through an interview in the morning and then a radio show appearance which was cancelled and I was frazzled, thinking I'd misunderstood the host and messed up. Then a couple of writer friends took me out last night and I... drank too much. So, I didn't see this until a few minutes ago when I hauled my hungover butt out of bed. This makes my day! Thank you! (My hangover's just been cured...)

Deniz Bevan said...

I love seeing recommendations for new books. Will add these to my ever-growing wishlist...

Old Kitty said...

Wow! Such an eclectic mix of books! Thanks for the reviews and intro to them! Just Like That has piqued my interest for sure! Take care
x

DeniseCovey_L'Aussie said...

Hi Anne. Thanks for these very interesting reviews. I've heard of Les Edgerton's book before and I'm pleased to hear you liked it so much. They all sound great. I always like a book with food in it!

I hope you got your formatting probs sorted as per previous post. Sounds horrible!

The Duke's Divorce sounds intriguing. Good luck with it. I've got the previous ones to read yet when I get time!

Denise

J.L. Campbell said...

Thanks for recommending these. I've been thinking about getting Food of Love.