Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Blue Plate Special - Kate Christensen

Blue Plate Special
Title: Blue Plate Special: An Autobiography of My Appetites
Author: Kate Christensen
Publication Date: 1/1/13
Pages: 368
Genre: Memoir / Food / Nonfiction
How I Found It: Some list of foodie memoirs
Date Completed: 8/3/15

Summary: Christensen invites the reader to join her on a journey through her life and culinary explorations. 

What I Thought: My immediate reflection on this book as I sit down to write this review: it made me sad. It made me sad for Christensen and the life she has led. The book details the rough family life Christensen has experienced throughout her life. Abusive and then absentee father, unstable father figures following him, emotionally fragile family members...the list goes on.

Christensen seems to handle it all with a chin-up attitude, more of a this-is-how-it-is approach than a self-pitying one. Her transparency about the tough stuff is admirable; many stories she shares are not ones most people would want publicized. Yet, she faces them head on, as they have clearly shaped her into the person she is today.

As with all memoirs of this type, I enjoyed the presence of food along the journey. One of my favorite sections included Christensen's account of her time in France - no surprise there. I'm a bit fascinated by the way food shapes us. It is present in such a plethora of memories, the highs, the lows, the mundane. Christensen, of course, is no exception and she includes this sustaining character throughout her narrative. 

I enjoyed the book, though not nearly as much some of its contemporaries. Still, it fits the genre and the genre is one that I love.

Rating: ★★★☆☆
Will I Re-Read: Probably not

A Reduced Review: Family, food, and the author's journey to finding contentedness take center stage in this food-centric memoir. 

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