Tuesday, August 19, 2014
A Table By The Window by Hillary Manton Lodge
Heirloom recipes, family secrets…and a chance for love The youngest heir to a French-Italian restaurant dynasty, food writer Juliette D’Alisa has spent her life negotiating her skill with words and her restaurant aspirations. When her brother Nico offers her a chance to open a restaurant together, she feels torn—does she really have what it takes? Should she risk leaving her journalism career? After the death of her grandmother, Juliette discovers an antique photograph of a man who looks strikingly like her brother. As the truth behind the picture reveals romance and dark secrets, Juliette struggles to keep the mystery away from her nosy family until she can uncover the whole story. Inspired by her grandmother’s evolving story, Juliette resolves to explore the world of online dating. To her surprise, she finds a kindred spirit in Neil McLaren, a handsome immunologist based in Memphis, Tennessee. With a long-distance relationship simmering, Juliette faces life-shifting decisions. How can she possibly choose between a promising culinary life and Neil, a man a world away in more ways than one? And is it possible her Grandmother’s story can help show the way?
MY REVIEW-I have to admit, this book was not high on my favorites list. Which I felt bad about because I have thoroughly enjoyed the other stories from Mrs. Lodge. It was hard to get through and very slow at the beginning. It did pick up about halfway through but I still felt disconnected from the story. Partially because of the french language but partially the story itself. Juliette is all about restaurants and food. It is in her blood you might say as her parents own a restaurant and her brother wants her to help him open one as well. When the book opens Juliette is writing a food column for the local paper. There are several different aspects of the story and one of them is when her grandmother dies she finds a picture. One that opens a lot of mysteries and secrets. I did like this part as I am a big mystery fan:)
About halfway through Juliette enters the online dating world. At this point it gets somewhat funny because she corresponds with a doctor named Neil. He was my favorite part of the whole book. Really sweet and kind. Their back and forth dialogue over email is pretty good! And once you get to this point in the book, it really picks up speed.
I have a couple of problems with this book. The main problem being the Christianity. For this being a Christian book there wasn't much in it to indicate this. Very little about God and a couple things that just don't speak much to that fact. Divorce is very lightly tossed around and it kind of threw me off. The other problem I had was the french. Most books with foreign languages will put a list in the back with phrases or at least let you know what is being said. This one just throws the words in there and doesn't give you any indication of what is meant. Otherwise it is okay but definitely not my cup of tea. I prefer a book that grasps your attention and keeps it from page one. If you like restaurants and food, this might be one to pick up.
**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**