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Kitchens of the Great Midwest
Kitchens of the Great Midwest | J. Ryan Stradal
Amazon Indiebound Barnes and Noble WorldCat Goodreads LibraryThing
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review
Blaire
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Pickpick

Eva is born to a chef and a sommelier and the her life story and that of those around her is told through their significant food experiences. Both pokes fun at and has reverence for locavore foodie culture, with an appreciation for bars. The different sections seemed disparate at times but came together to show how each person‘s choices played out. An enjoyable read.

JamieArc I just listened to an interview with this author about his newest book that was really interesting. The interview was with Ari Shapiro, if you wanted to search for it. 4w
Blaire @JamieArc I will! Thanks for letting me know. 4w
59 likes1 stack add2 comments
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SheilaChew
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The peanut butter bars are amazing! The book is even better. Read the book. Make the bars. Thank me later 💕

Darklunarose They look delicious! 4mo
37 likes1 comment
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SheilaChew
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I‘m making Pat Prager‘s Peanut Butter Bars from this book, and I can‘t wait to try them! (Recipe is in the book and on Pinterest)

Tamra Yum! 4mo
39 likes1 comment
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BookishMarginalia
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Lots of fabulous books from Christine! I feel the #LitsyGoesPostal ❤️ ! I‘ve wanted the tagged book for a long time and I‘m a sucker for Nancy Milford biographies! And a book about cooking from books? Sold! The Making of a Carpenter looks riveting —and I‘ll probably have to arm wrestle @WanderingBookaneer for it! I‘ve been intrigued by the Eve of Destruction for a while — the premise just sounds so good! And I love journals (and I persist too!) 💜

BookishMarginalia @Christine here‘s the tag 🏷 that I can‘t put in the post 🤔🤷🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️ 6mo
LeahBergen Voracious is really good! 👏🏻👏🏻 6mo
Christine Aww yay, I hope you enjoy all of the books! I really loved Voracious (agreed, @LeahBergen !) and the tagged book (having grown up in a great kitchen of the Midwest myself!). And Hammer Head is one of my all-time favorite memoirs - just fantastic, and well worth arm wrestling over! 😜 6mo
BookishMarginalia @Christine You did an excellent job choosing — they all look terrific! 6mo
108 likes4 comments
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whatsthEStorey
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Mehso-so

Interwoven stories centering around Eva & food in the Midwest with lovely recipes throughout. A nice story and concept. This only gets a so-so from me because it doesn‘t delve deep enough into any of the characters for me to care very much.

Amiable I really liked this one. 7mo
42 likes1 comment
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mcctrish
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Pickpick

I really had no idea what the story was and consequently it was a wonderful surprise of a book. It‘s about karma and hard work and that life isn‘t fair and doing your best and making good choices despite everything going on around you. It‘s almost like short stories with characters that reappear, which allows the story to jump ahead time wise with a bit of back story and not a lot of blah, blah, blah. The ending was nice in a full circle way.

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mcctrish
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I‘m not in the mid-west ( I live in South Western Ontario ) but this is what I made for dinner on Sunday and doubled it so I‘d have an easy dinner for Thursday when I go to book club 🥇roasted veg and meatballs served up on quinoa

JenFowler Omg I wish I could have some of this! 😋 7mo
mcctrish @JenFowler I‘d share if you were close 7mo
Susannah Looks terrific. Seriously yummy. 7mo
See All 6 Comments
mcctrish Thank you @Susannah it was a high point in dinner prep this week by a long shot 🤣 7mo
ValerieAndBooks We used to live near Detroit years ago , so have been to London ON a few times 😊. Hope you‘re staying warm this week! 7mo
mcctrish @ValerieAndBooks thanks, many places are way colder than here but it does suck when your face hurts when you go outside 🤣 7mo
44 likes6 comments
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whatsthEStorey
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“One of the things that Eva hated the most about being a kid was how everyone always told her that childhood was the best time of their entire lives, and don't grow up too fast, and enjoy these carefree days while you can. In those moments, her body felt like the world's smallest prison, and she escaped in her mind to her chile plants....”

I remember this feeling!

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Laura317
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Pickpick

I really don‘t know what to say about this book. It all revolves around Eva and food. The book seems disjointed and jarring in spots, but I liked it. Seeing the different threads come together at the end was satisfying.

LeeRHarry I enjoyed this one too 😊 7mo
58 likes1 comment
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Laura317
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Starting this since work is beyond dead.

CogsOfEncouragement I read this with a book club a couple years ago. We all enjoyed it. 8mo
Eggs Enjoyed this one 8mo
49 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Acor
Pickpick

I loved each story and its connection to food. Even more, I loved that these connections were constructed in cycles of people with ingredients and those ingredients bringing people together.

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SamanthaMarie
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I feel like December has made me a crazy person. We have had visitors almost the whole month. Which was great but also SO draining for this hardcore introvert. I can't wait to delve into the amazing books @debthmpsn got me for #blinddatebookswap She got me the tagged book and also The Dark Heart of Florence. I had to show off how amazing her wrapping was, I'm SO bad at it haha. Completely in awe of your lovely skills, Deb!
@TheReadingMermaid

TheReadingMermaid 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻💕 8mo
debthmpsn Awww, thanks ☺️ Hope you enjoy the books! 8mo
Michollio That's funny -- I refer to myself as a hardcore introvert 😆 8mo
SamanthaMarie @debthmpsn Thank you so much!! Ans thank you for all of the goodies. My toddler made me share the cookies ;) haha! 8mo
SamanthaMarie @Michollio When your survival/sanity count on alone time... I think it is safe to say hardcore introvert is the right descriptor, right?! 😉 8mo
86 likes5 comments
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kspenmoll
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#bookmail #LMBPC #groupR #round4
Apologies for the delay! Mailing this out ASAP. Hope the group enjoys it! I have a dilemma though. Please help! Been very disorganized last couple of month. I thought I was person #4 to mail to Jenny but then another list looked like I was person #3 to mail to Maria. Does each of you know who you are mailing to? Sorry!!!🤪

Wife This is the order I have: 1)Vickie 2)Maria 3)Katherine 4)Jenni. 8mo
kspenmoll @Wife Thanks so much! I really appreciate your help! 8mo
Wife 👍🏻😊 8mo
67 likes3 comments
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Amiable
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Pickpick

I'm not really sure how to describe this book except to say that I really enjoyed it. It's sort of like a collection of short stories that are woven into a novel. It starts with the story of Eva Torvald, who is orphaned as a young infant. Each chapter is then told from a different person's perspective as Eva grows into adulthood. It's also about food, and the Midwest, and how those things are intertwined. 4/5 stars

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kspenmoll
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Pickpick

#Gratitude30
#Food
This novel was not what I expected it to be. Interwoven lives, midwestern food, a woman with an extraordinary palette, families we are born into & those we make. This is my pick for #LMPBC #Round4.

CogsOfEncouragement I read this with a book club. We all enjoyed it. 9mo
LeeRHarry Thought this was a great read! 😊 good pick! 9mo
71 likes3 stack adds2 comments
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Blueberry
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Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks 🧡👍🏻🧡👍🏻 9mo
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego The Kitchen House is good. 9mo
vkois88 ❤❤❤ 9mo
63 likes3 comments
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moarbookspleaze
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November book club selection. We wanted a book with a food theme. October‘s selection of Rebecca was a hit!

Amiable I really liked this book 10mo
moarbookspleaze @Amiable I‘m excited to read it! 10mo
25 likes1 stack add2 comments
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BornReadChicago
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Pickpick

This is one of my all time favorites, and I was DELIGHTED to snap up a hardback copy at my local Goodwill 🎉 It‘s also one of the few novels I‘ve been tempted to reread. If you‘ve read it, you would probably understand why! If not, I HIGHLY recommend Kitchens of the Great Midwest. It‘s uniquely told, full of authentic characters and like a collection of interconnected short stories with a WILD ending. ❤️

Joyfulmimi Goodwill stores are so fun!! 11mo
BornReadChicago @Joyfulmimi SO FUN! It‘s dangerous for my bookshelves 🤷‍♀️ 11mo
Joyfulmimi We just have to buy more bookshelves is all @BornReadChicago 11mo
14 likes3 comments
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intothehallofbooks
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A top, top favorite of mine. I reread this slowly after losing my Dad last month. It helped somehow, the comfort in here. Yes this is a book for foodies, but this is also a story about family-the one we are born into and the one we can create for ourselves over time. The story structure is a delight, as is the varied cast. The Lutefisk and Venison chapters touched me down in my very soul with this reread and the Bars chapter is always just 🙌🏻

Reviewsbylola I‘m sorry for the loss of your dad. ♥️ 11mo
LeahBergen So sorry to hear about your Dad. ❤️ 11mo
readordierachel So sorry for your loss ❤ 11mo
See All 8 Comments
BookNAround I‘m sorry for the loss of your dad but glad that rereading this book gave you some comfort. 11mo
LauraBeth So sorry to hear about the loss of your dad ❤️ I love this book - glad you found comfort in your re-read 11mo
Mamashep So sorry for your loss. 11mo
tracey38 So sorry for the loss of your dad. 11mo
irre 💕💕 11mo
59 likes1 stack add8 comments
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OrangeMooseReads
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Another Dollar Tree (trying to organize my house better), another book.

Chelsea.Poole I really liked this one! 12mo
Jbakesmcgee3 I loved this book! 12mo
51 likes2 comments
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Christyco125
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Mehso-so

It was a sweet story told from multiple POVs. I enjoyed it. #2018christyread

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DarcysMom
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Pickpick

🌟🌟🌟🌟
#audiobook
#overdrive

minkyb Great review. 13mo
DarcysMom @minkyb Thank you ❤ 13mo
60 likes2 comments
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DarcysMom
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Woo Hoo! Major goal hit! I am super proud of myself!
#audiowalk
#800in2018
#ReachingFor1000in2018
#93MileJuly
#stretchingfor100
#overdrive

Lovesbooks87 Wow! That's amazing! Congrats! 🎉🎉🎉🎉 13mo
DarcysMom @Lovesbooks87 Thank you! Making walking/getting in better shape is a major new year's resolution for 2018. 13mo
Bklover Congratulations!!! 13mo
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DarcysMom Thank you @Bklover 🤗 13mo
MicheleinPhilly YES! Go you! 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼 13mo
DarcysMom Thanks @MicheleinPhilly 🤗❤ 13mo
Kathleenkelly That‘s amazing!!! 13mo
DarcysMom @Kathleenkelly thank you! 🤗 13mo
KathyWheeler Good for you! Your walks inspire mine.😊 13mo
Pamwurtzler Wow! Congratulations- that‘s impressive! 13mo
DarcysMom @KathyWheeler Aww... Thanks! 🤗 13mo
DarcysMom @Pamwurtzler Thank you!! ❤❤ 13mo
72 likes12 comments
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DarcysMom
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ontheBL
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Mehso-so

A cute story about the landscape and flavors of my childhood.

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DarcysMom
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tammysue 🙌🏻😁 13mo
64 likes1 comment
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DarcysMom
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66 likes1 stack add
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DarcysMom
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60 likes1 stack add
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kyraleseberg
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Pickpick

The quirky story of an unlucky girl who made her own luck in life, as told by people who knew her at different stages; some loved her, others loathed her. I loved the story, the recipes, wonderful food descriptions, and especially the ending which connected all the narrators together!

28 likes1 stack add
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kyraleseberg
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We went to the drive-in last night and I read until the sun went down!

debthmpsn Love the drive in. They are getting harder and harder to find :( How is the book? 13mo
kyraleseberg @debthmpsn I'm enjoying it so far! The first word that comes to mind to describe it is quirky! 13mo
debthmpsn Perfect! I live quirky. Adding to list :) 13mo
Mcoun Fun book and great recipes! 13mo
kyraleseberg @Mcoun I agree! Both quirky and incredibly charming! 13mo
30 likes1 stack add5 comments
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JoyBlue
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Pickpick

There‘s a lot crammed in to this, some parts to better effect than others. The “main” character is a girl/woman named Eva, whom we follow from birth to adulthood. Along the way, we meet a bunch of other people who pop up again in some way during the story. The overall sense of the book I have is sadness. I think I‘m overdue for a whole slew of fluffy, happy reading. I‘m willing to entertain suggestions. Lay ‘em on me, dear Littens!

irre Anything by Marisa de los Santos 13mo
JoyBlue @irre Thank you! 💙 13mo
LeeRHarry Loved this one! 13mo
JoyBlue @LeeRHarry 👍🏼 13mo
79 likes1 stack add4 comments
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Pamwurtzler
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#bookmail post 2 - thanks @Leigh0906 for the #feedareader package! These books look great & I love the bookmarks! I‘m psyched to try the soup and the cookies too!

RebelReader Kitchens is a great read! Enjoy! 13mo
37 likes1 comment
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meltedsquirrel
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Today's Dollar Tree book finds. Can't complain about the price.

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kyraleseberg
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Today's #DollarTree book haul 📚

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Foragingfantasy
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Beach read... haven‘t actually read much tho.

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hwestfall
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this book. The book revolves around one girl named Eva but is told from the perspective of different people at different times in her life. I wasn't sure how I felt about the ending at first but the more that I think about it the more I am glad it ended the way it did. This was a great book for me to read while at the pool with the kids.

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hwestfall
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This made me laugh. I can confirm as a Midwestern church lady we do this all the time. We can't ever just say thank you. We always have to tell about the huge bargain we got 😂

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Halechr
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Summer reading has begun 💕

6 likes1 stack add
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Librarybelle
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Eva is a #spicegirl and chef extraordinaire. Loved this book! #aprella

Cinfhen This book has been on my TBR radar for a long time 1y
Librarybelle @Cinfhen It was a fun, quick read for me 1y
See All 11 Comments
Mdargusch This sounds like it‘s written in a similar style to Stir, a food memoir I just read. 👍🏼 1y
Mdargusch Were there good recipes in this? 1y
Librarybelle @Mdargusch I didn‘t try the recipes in the book, but they were dishes mentioned in the book - think of foods with a Scandinavian theme. And dessert bars. 1y
emilyhaldi This looks good!! 1y
Eggs Loved this book❤️ 1y
Librarybelle @Eggs It was so good! 1y
Eggs I loved the story and the characters' connections, but also because I grew up in the Midwest. It's all about the "bars" ?? 1y
78 likes3 stack adds11 comments
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Nebula_of_Books
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Mehso-so

This book has been on my Kindle since it came out. I loved the original cover art and the plot seemed interesting so I picked it up. The book, however, isn‘t really a novel as much as it is a collection of short stories centered loosely around one girl, Eva. I liked the stories but I felt like the book was a bit disjointed. The writing was good but the book as a whole just seemed to lack something.

susanw I‘ve had this on my kobo since it came out also. I haven‘t read it yet either, but thanks for the heads up on the linked short stories. I thought it was a novel and would have been kinda bummed when I eventually did read it. 1y
Nebula_of_Books @susanw I think that‘s a big reason why I gave it a 6/10. I just don‘t think I was ready for the short story format. The final “chapter” was nice and attempts to tie everything together. 1y
14 likes2 comments
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Eggs
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Clever and amusing story of Eva Thorvald and her life quest to become a world reknown chef, and the people who make the journey with her.

71 likes3 stack adds
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Purrfectpages
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1. Kids book- Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs Adult book- Kitchens of the Great Midwest 2. Soup! 3. Cucumbers, yuck! 4. Thanksgiving 5. So hard to pick one anymore. At the moment I‘ll say Juanito‘s, a local Mexican restaurant. #manicmonday

JoScho Yeah cucumbers aren‘t my thing either. 1y
Purrfectpages @JoScho everyone always tries to tell me it‘s just water, but it‘s not the same. As an element in lotion though I‘m ok with. 1y
44 likes2 comments
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Chelsea.Poole
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1. I really loved Kitchens of the Great Midwest
2. Is pizza an acceptable answer? Italian food in general. And at a basic level tomatoes are my favorite
3. Vegetarian here 🙋🏼‍♀️ so all meat, but I‘m going with meatloaf 🙅🏼‍♀️
4. Christmas — Russian tea cakes 😋
5. A little Italian place in the next town up, or many others. Love Chinese, Mexican, Thai, and pizza places. I just love food 🤗
#manicmonday

JoScho Pizza is totally acceptable ❤️ 1y
Kaye #4 best cookies ever. 1y
monalyisha One of the photographers my husband works with throws an annual “tomato party,” where he gives away free heirloom tomato plants (like, 6-8 per person)! It‘s AMAZING. Last year, we got these little green cherry-tomatoes called “Green Doctors.” They were so sweet & plump. I can‘t even. I hope we get some goods again this year! 🤞🏻 (Also, I used to HATE tomatoes. 😅) 1y
See All 7 Comments
hgrimes Pizza is in my top 5 somewhere! 1y
Chelsea.Poole @monalyisha those sound AMAZING!!! Makes my mouth water just thinking about summer tomatoes 🍅 1y
Chelsea.Poole @JoScho @hgrimes 🍕 is life! (edited) 1y
Chelsea.Poole @Kaye I‘ve heard them called so many things. Sometimes we call them Mexican wedding cakes. I‘ve also heard people call them snowballs. Whatever they‘re called, they are totally delicious 😋 1y
67 likes7 comments
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SheilaChew
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Pickpick

This is the story of Eva - a girl who grows up in the Midwest with a love of food. She becomes a famous and exclusive chef. Her story is told through different people and it jumps around to specific events in her life. I loved it! Amazing characters, interesting situations, and the ending was perfect. The authors notes at the end made me cry.
This picture is sunset at my parents house in Arizona.

Brooke_H Does part of the book take place in Arizona? I‘m traveling there at the end of the month, and I‘m super excited to read books that take place there! 1y
SheilaChew No it is mostly Illinois and South Dakota. Where are you traveling in Arizona? 1y
Herschelian Just finished reading this, a quirky tale that loops round and round connecting the various characters. The book has a lot of charm and gentle humour. I must admit I am a sucker for fiction with recipes! 1y
SheilaChew @Herschelian Agree! I love the recipes. 1y
48 likes1 stack add4 comments
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SheilaChew
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Evening reading time - I may finish this book tonight! I still don‘t know if I like the narrative hopping around so much, but it does keep my interest! I am at the bars baking competitions section.

wanderinglynn Who‘s the cutie who looks like s/he‘s saying hello? 🐶❤️ 1y
SheilaChew @wanderinglynn This is Snickers - he loves being close to me 💕🐶 1y
41 likes2 comments
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Purrfectpages
Pickpick

This was an interesting book. Each chapter was dedicated to a different character who would in some way or another connect back to the only character to appear in every chapter, Eva. Spanning decades, Kitchens of the Great Midwest manages to uniquely tell a story indirectly through the eyes others. You don‘t really get to know Eva, and yet you feel like you do know her, all at the same time. It‘s a good read if you‘re a foodie, too.

Victoriahoperose I loved this book so much! 1y
Purrfectpages @Victoriahoperose it‘s a good one! 1y
LeeRHarry Enjoying it so far 😊 1y
Ms_T I liked this book more than I thought I would. 1y
46 likes1 stack add4 comments
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SheilaChew
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Sunday morning - waking up slow 💕
My husband brought me coffee in bed and the dog is sleeping on my foot, so I‘m trapped here. Oh darn! 🤓
This book is unexpected and delightful. If you are a foodie who likes reading about interesting characters, you should read this!

Tamra I‘ve been debating about this one. I guess I‘ll check it out. 1y
Sapphire I made some recipes from the book. Peanut butter bars became a potluck hit for awhile. 1y
SheilaChew @Sapphire Yum! I‘ll have to try those! 1y
52 likes3 stack adds3 comments
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Purrfectpages
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Another day, another book I‘ve been curious to read for awhile now. Hope it doesn‘t disappoint! #litsyatoz #letterk

LauraBeth I enjoyed this one! 1y
Tanisha_A Oooh loving that cover! 1y
Ms_T I read this last year and rather enjoyed it. 1y
Purrfectpages @laurabeth @Ms_T I‘m enjoying it so far. It‘s unique! 1y
42 likes2 stack adds4 comments