Review of Gabriell Hamilton’s New Memoir

Sustainable writers are of course sustained readers, so I’ll feature book reviews occasionally here
of new works.  This review comes from the woman who first taught me to love reading, my mom, Linda Brown . . . .  

A Tasty Memoir:  Blood, Bones, and Butter
by Gabriell  Hamilton
Reviewed by Linda Brown, August 14, 2012

I first met Gabriell Hamilton when I read an article by her in the May issue of Bon Appétit, entitled “Blood, Bones, and Baked Eggplant,” and I fell instantly in love: with her, her Italian mother-in-law, Alda—and Italy in general. At the end of the article, I read that Gabriell was the chef/owner of Prune—a restaurant in New York City’s West Village and that her book, Blood, Bones, and Butter had just been published by Random House. I made a bee-line to my library and (good luck) it was on the shelf. I spent several happy hours enjoying Gabriell’s world. Her writing style is direct and compelling. She created windows into her world, her life, and her mind. Her journey is told through her love of food, beginning, of course, with the aromas from her Mother’s kitchen—applewood smoke, rosemary and garlic and spit-roasted lamb. The story unfolds through France, Greece, and Turkey – and the many years of working at catering factories to pay the rent—and finally, her own kitchen at “Prune” (with its challenges) and her mother-in-law’s kitchen in Italy (with its challenges) and her life’s challenges—not enough love, broken family and relationships—but the love of good food and the preparation of it remains her passion and has been her savior. When I finished reading, I felt as if I knew her and I would love to fly to New York and have dinner at “Prune.” When you finish the book, I think you’ll want to join me.


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