Berkley, Jun 2002, 22.95, 288 pp.
In 1996 having celebrated his sixtieth birthday in Maine, renowned chef James Haller, wary of the kitchen, decides to R & R in the French Loire Valley. He and friends rent a seventeenth century home in Savonnieres. Six people including James would stay the entire month that they have leased the property for while other friends will come by for shorter duration.
The house combined the best of history with much of modern day convenience. The company was companionable both those staying in the house and the locals whose fresh foods at the markets provided James an invigorating regeneration and though he planned not to cook one meal the motivated chef was soon doing all the cooking.
Though the recipes are what readers might expect from the author-chef, the key to this uplifting biographical month is how important friendship is to the human condition. France furbishes the atmosphere that rejuvenated a tired James. VIE DE FRANCE: SHARING FOOD, FRIENDSHIP, AND A KITCHEN IN THE LOIRE VALLEY is an inspirational toast to the stimulation of camaraderie that is a human need in order to live precious life to the fullest.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner