Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Non-Fiction
Bon Appétit! The Delicious Life of Julia Child

Bon Appétit! The Delicious Life of Julia Child

Spring 2013 Non-Fiction
Ages: All Ages
Author: Jessie Hartland
Illustrator: Jessie Hartland
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 978-0375869440
Hardcover Price: $17.99

Julia Child is best known as the chef who brought French cooking to American kitchens. But did you know that she was also a mischievous tomboy, a mediocre student, and a spy agency staffer before that? Jessie Hartland's Bon Appetit! tells Child's whole life story in an exuberant picture book that matches the energy of the late French Chef.

Hartland's telling of Julia Child's life reveals how, even before she became a trained Chef at Le Cordon Bleu, food was always Child's passion. There were jelly donuts in her youth, ox tongue with tripe in China, and fresh oysters in Frances. Child took years (and many failed career attempts) to become the chef who finally published Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Her adventures are brought to life with hand-written text and squiggly drawings of detailed scenes that will reward re-readings. There is even a full Julia Child recipe for galantine included, though you may not find yourself willing to source the one-and-a-half pounds of truffles and pound of calf's udder needed to make it.

Lacking polish and a little scattered, at times, Bon Appetit is a beautiful picture book that is just as lovably chaotic as the woman it depicts.

Parents' Choice   ©2013 Parents' Choice

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