Book Club: My Life In France, Week 2 Discussion

Book Club: My Life In France, Week 2 Discussion

Gather around, it's Monday and time for Book Club. Last week we talked about the foreword, Introduction and Chapter One, and the discussion is still going. Now we move on to Chapters Two and Three...

Chapter Two, "Le Cordon Bleu," gets further into Julia and Paul's experience in Paris, and Julia's time in culinary school, in the basement of Le Cordon Bleu with a handful of GIs. The descriptions are detailed, amazingly so, as if the pages were lifted from her diary. From the day-to-day goings on at school ("shopping at Les Halles in search of provisions for upcoming classes: liver, chickens, beef, vegetables, and candied violets") to Julia's bout of tummy troubles (diagnosed as "an American stomach in Paris") we get to know what it was really like to be Julia Child, modestly and enthusiastically on the cusp of her famed career.

Chapter Three, "Three Hearty Eaters," introduces us to Simone Beck Fischbacher and Louisette Bertholle, who would eventually become Julia's partners in "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" (1961). Here we get a strong sense of the depth with which Julia collaborated. Running alongside of this professional collaboration is the personal one with her husband, Paul: equally touching and deep. The photos in this chapter in particular are wonderful, with Julia towering above her partners.

Tell us all what is striking you, inspiring, moving you in My Life in France.

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