On Sale May 6

About the Book

In her New York Times bestselling memoirs Tender at the Bone and Comfort Me with Apples, Ruth Reichl has brilliantly illuminated how food defines us. Now she celebrates this theme in her dazzling fiction debut—a novel of sisters, family ties, and a young woman who must find the courage to let go of the past in order to embrace her own true gifts.

Billie Breslin has traveled far from her California home to take a job at Delicious!, the most iconic food magazine in New York, and, thus, the world. But Billie’s career has barely started when the publication is summarily shut down—an unseen turn of events leads her to stay behind at an interim job that she expects to be a bore. To her surprise, it turns out to be the portal to a magical, life-changing discovery. 

In a hidden room in the magazine’s library, Billie finds the letters of Lulu Swan, a plucky twelve-year-old who corresponds with the legendary chef James Beard during World Ward II. Lulu’s letters provide Billie with a deeper understanding of history—and the history of food. Most important, Lulu’s courage in the face of loss inspires Billes to come to terms with her own truths—about her panic attacks, her adored big sister and her ability to open her heart to love. 

“Reichl’s vivid descriptions of food will have readers salivating, and an insider’s look at life at a food magazine is fascinating. Her satisfying coming-of-age novel of love and loss vividly demonstrates the power of food to connect people across cultures and generations.”–Library Journal, Starred Review
“Rich characterization, a bright New York setting, transcendent discussions of taste and food.”–Booklist




May 15—Princeton, NJ
12:00 PM
Springdale Golf Club hosted by Princeton Public Library
1895 Clubhouse Drive
May 18—Pound Ridge, NY
11:30 AM
Jean Georges Restaurant Literary Luncheon
The Inn at Pound Ridge by Jean-Georges
May 20—Baltimore, MD
7:00 PM 
Enoch Pratt Free Library
Pratt Free Library, Great Hall
400 Cathedral Street, Baltimore, MD 21201
May 21—Atlanta, GA
3:00 PM
A Cappella Books
208 Haralson Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30307
May 21 –Atlanta, GA
6:00 PM

The Café at Linton’s, hosted by Chef Linton Hopkins and A Cappella Books

1345 Piedmont Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30309

June 2—Madison, WI
11:30 AM
Lunch for Libraries Series
Madison Public Library, Central Library
201 W Mifflin St, Madison, WI 53703
June 2—Madison, WI
7:30 PM
Public Evening Event
Madison Public Library, Central Library
201 W Mifflin St, Madison, WI 53703
June 3—Cleveland, OH
7:00 PM
Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma-Snow Branch
Beachwood Community Center Auditorium
2121 Snow Road, Parma, OH 44134
June 4— Petoskey, Michigan
5:30 PM
Bay Harbor Yacht Club- Lange Center
4300 Vista Drive, Bay Harbor (Petoskey), MI 49770

June 9— Denver, CO

Tattered Cover Bookstore, Aspen Grove
7301 S. Santa Fe Drive, Littleton, CO 80120


June 10—Fort Collins, Colorado
7:00 PM
Café Vino, hosted by Old Fire House Books
1200 South College Avenue, Fort Collins, CO 80524


Contacting Ruth
Kathy Robbins
The Robbins Office

Lecture Agent
Royce Carlton
Royce Carlton
More recipes
The Gourmet Cookbook

Published: 2004
Editor: Ruth Reichl