Julia Child Rules

julia child rules

Julia Child Rules
Lessons on Savoring Life

Karen Karbo
Illustrations by Mark Steele
skirt!, an imprint of Globe Pequot Press, 2013

From the dust jacket: “…Julia Child Rules dissects the life of the sunny, unpretentious chef, author, cooking show star, and bon vivant, with an eye towards learning how we, too, can savor life.

“…{the author} takes us for a spin through Julia’s life: from her idyllic childhood in California to her confusing young adulthood in New York, her years working for the OSS in Sri Lanka, her world-class love affairs with Paris and Paul Child, and her decades as America’s beloved French chef. {The author} weaves in her own personal experiences and stops for import life lessons along the way: how to live by your whims, make the world your oyster, live happily married, work hard, and enjoy a life of full immersion. It celebrates Julia’s indomitable spirit and irrepressible joy, giving readers a taste of what it means to master the art of living.”

Julia Child was an amazing woman and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her life. The author wrote about Julia in a way one might write to a friend about another friend. It is friendly, warm and funny and far from one of those staid, traditional, (and some may say, dry) biographies. It is inspirational and thought provoking, especially with the ‘Rules’ with which the book was tied together. Some of my favorites were: “Rule 1: Live with Abandon; Rule #3: Learn to be Amused; Rule #4: Obey Your Whims; Rule #6: To Be Happy, Work Hard; Rule #7: Solve the Problem in Front of You.” All good rules for any one follow, but the main overall thought is to accept who you are and be that person. Julia knew she would never win any beauty contest but she accepted that fact and was happy and successful anyway. She lived every moment of her life until she lived no more. Her life had just as many valleys and peaks as any of us has, yet she accepted the moments, both good and awful, for what they were and then moved on, still excited about the next step.

Rating 4 out of 5 paws for providing inspiration to get out of bed each morning and throw myself fully into my life, savoring it all.

Reviewer:

jack-loc

Jack, North Carolina Division Chief and Banned Books Librarian

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Julia’s Cats

In honor of the upcoming cooking holiday we are reposting a book originally reviewed on July 18, 2015. Julia Child was the cook of all cooks, so we are also honoring her.

 

13429722Julia’s Cats: Julia Child’s Life in the Company of Cats

Patricia Barey and Therese Burson
Abrams Image, Abrams Books, 2012

Who knew Julia Child was a life-long cat lover? I only knew of her as someone who had a strange voice, was really tall and seemed to be able to cook very well. But, as we learn in this book, Julia fell in love with cats when she and Paul first lived in Paris. And because she spent her life moving around so much that she was unable to keep one permanently (her in-residence cats were always on loan from friends) until her last year of life. But everywhere she went if Julia wasn’t talking food, she was talking cats!

Chapter One: La Belle France: A New Life Begins – Julia and Paul move to Paris as newlyweds and set up housekeeping. She would soon find out mice were prevalent in her building as well as Paris and all good French housewives had at least one mouser in residence. She ended up with a tortieshell which she named Minette.

Chapter Two: And Kitty Makes Three: Minette Mimosa McWilliams Child – Minette settled into being the pampered, spoiled and plump cat of the house, feasting on every tidbit that fell to the floor as Julia was learning the art of French cooking.

Chapter Three: Mastering The Art of French Cooking – Julia goes to the famous Cordon Bleu, and Minette has her own reserved stool in her mistress’s kitchen. After four years Julia and Paul have to leave France for a new posting (Paul worked for the Foreign Service). Sadly, Minette must be left behind, but she is welcomed by a recently cat-widowed lady. This lady owned a charcuterie(sausage & meat shop), so the sweet feline would be well fed!

Chapter Four: Return to Paradise: A House in Provence – Julia and Paul lease property and build a small cottage close by their dear friends in Provence and are not only blessed with a whole cadre of felines on site, but they pick one to spoil and name him le PetitPrince. They were only in Provence for short stays before crossing back to America. They kept this up for many years, and with each visit, there were always enough cats around for Julia to indulge.

Chapter Five: From Cambridge to California: A Homecoming – By now Julia is widowed (Paul died in 1994) and a world famous cook (she didn’t consider herself a chef) and only visited Provence a few more times before finally settling in California. In 2004, Julia adopted her last kitten, Minou, whom she loved until her death in August, shortly before her 92nd birthday.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Julia Child with an emphasis on her love of cats versus her love of food. Oh, the food-love was in the book and the descriptions of fresh vegetables and cooked meals made me hungry every time I read it. But it was surprising and joyous to know her three favorites were food, cats and her Paul (though not always necessarily in that order!).

If you want a quick look at the life of Julia Child, a brief travelogue of France, and a life-long romance between best friends, this is the book for you! And, it wouldn’t be a book about a world famous cook without a recipe, so one is included on the very last page of the book. It is Julia’s recipe for Langues-de-chat (Cat’s Tongue Cookies) – delicate ladyfinger-like cookies – for humans, not cats!

We read this book as a part of the Summer Reading Challenge: 2015, category, Read a Book Found on a Library Display. Auntie Sabina was wandering through the library looking for a book to read and she just happened upon this one!

Rating: 4 out of 5 paws because of all the wonderful cats!

jackReviewer: Jack

Minette’s Feast

13362685

Minette’s Feast,
The Delicious Story of Julia Child and Her Cat

By Susanna Reich
Illustrated by Amy Bates
Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2012

This is a story about Minette, Julia Child’s first cat in Paris. From another book we read (Julia’s Cats, you can read Jack’s review Here) I learned that every French kitchen had a resident cat in the 1940s-50s due to uninvited guests (mice). Julia adopted a beautiful tortoiseshell and named her Minette Mimosa McWilliams Child. Mrs. Child loved cats and doted upon Minette but after a few years in Paris, her husband, Paul, was reassigned and they could not (would not?) take Minette with them. Minette ended up with a good home in the kitchen of a charcuterie. But that is not the story here.

The book is supposed to be about Minette but it is mostly about Julia Child. Perhaps because the author was attempting write about a real cat in history and the life of Minette before she came to be in Julia’s home is pretty much unknown. That isn’t to say the book isn’t beautiful and well-written, it is. But I didn’t want to know so much about Julia Child as I did about the cat. Mostly, the thing we learn about Minette is that she loved to eat mice.

But if you love cats, especially tortoiseshell cats, and you love cooking or are want to cook, this book just might spark your imagination. And, it’s a book about a cat, so it can’t be all that bad!!

Rating: 3 paws out of 5

feb 26 05ab

Reviewer: Simon

Julia’s Cats

13429722

Julia’s Cats: Julia Child’s Life in the Company of Cats

Patricia Barey and Therese Burson
Abrams Image, Abrams Books, 2012

Who knew Julia Child was a life-long cat lover? I only knew of her as someone who had a strange voice, was really tall and seemed to be able to cook very well. But, as we learn in this book, Julia fell in love with cats when she and Paul first lived in Paris. And because she spent her life moving around so much that she was unable to keep one permanently (her in-residence cats were always on loan from friends) until her last year of life. But everywhere she went if Julia wasn’t talking food, she was talking cats!

Chapter One: La Belle France: A New Life Begins – Julia and Paul move to Paris as newlyweds and set up housekeeping. She would soon find out mice were prevalent in her building as well as Paris and all good French housewives had at least one mouser in residence. She ended up with a tortieshell which she named Minette.

Chapter Two: And Kitty Makes Three: Minette Mimosa McWilliams Child – Minette settled into being the pampered, spoiled and plump cat of the house, feasting on every tidbit that fell to the floor as Julia was learning the art of French cooking.

Chapter Three: Mastering The Art of French Cooking – Julia goes to the famous Cordon Bleu, and Minette has her own reserved stool in her mistress’s kitchen. After four years Julia and Paul have to leave France for a new posting (Paul worked for the Foreign Service). Sadly, Minette must be left behind, but she is welcomed by a recently cat-widowed lady. This lady owned a charcuterie (sausage & meat shop), so the sweet feline would be well fed!

Chapter Four: Return to Paradise: A House in Provence – Julia and Paul lease property and build a small cottage close by their dear friends in Provence and are not only blessed with a whole cadre of felines on site, but they pick one to spoil and name him le Petit Prince. They were only in Provence for short stays before crossing back to America. They kept this up for many years, and with each visit, there were always enough cats around for Julia to indulge.

Chapter Five: From Cambridge to California: A Homecoming – By now Julia is widowed (Paul died in 1994) and a world famous cook (she didn’t consider herself a chef) and only visited Provence a few more times before finally settling in California. In 2004, Julia adopted her last kitten, Minou, whom she loved until her death in August, shortly before her 92nd birthday.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Julia Child with an emphasis on her love of cats versus her love of food. Oh, the food-love was in the book and the descriptions of fresh vegetables and cooked meals made me hungry every time I read it. But it was surprising and joyous to know her three favorites were food, cats and her Paul (though not always necessarily in that order!).

If you want a quick look at the life of Julia Child, a brief travelogue of France, and a life-long romance between best friends, this is the book for you! And, it wouldn’t be a book about a world famous cook without a recipe, so one is included on the very last page of the book. It is Julia’s recipe for Langues-de-chat (Cat’s Tongue Cookies) – delicate ladyfinger-like cookies – for humans, not cats!

We read this book as a part of the Summer Reading Challenge: 2015, category, Read a Book Found on a Library Display. Auntie Sabina was wandering through the library looking for a book to read and she just happened upon this one!

Rating: 4 out of 5 paws because of all the wonderful cats!

jack 071115aaReviewer: Jack

Patricia Barey  Patricia Barey

Therese Burson  Therese Burson

Julia's Cats: Julia Child's Life in the Company of Cats: Patricia ...     By Paul Child, Schlesinger Library Radcliffe Institute    Minette has her own book!!

 imagine it was wonderful, delicious fun researching this book. Can ... We’re going to check this book out!!!