Saturday, August 14, 2010

Audio Book Review: My Life in France by Julia Child

I loved loved loved this book. It was sweet and charming and delicious! I already knew a lot of the basic storyline because it is woven into the movie, Julie and Julia, starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. When I first sat down to read Julie Powell's memoir of the same name, I was expecting to learn more about Julia Child than I did. The movie was more of a balance between Powell and Child, and I found both stories to be delightful. I kept meaning to go back and read My Life in France, as it is the basis for Julia's portion of the movie. For some reason (probably the ridiculously precarious stacks of books already taking over my apartment), I never got around to it.

However, I saw the audiobook version at the library and snatched it up! And it was delightful! The story of her life was absolutely fascinating. I was utterly inspired by the way Julia transformed her life and blossomed into the person that we all know of. She didn't begin cooking until she was in her mid to late 30s. And it wasn't all smooth sailing. But she persevered.

I also adored the relationship between Julia and her husband Paul. Their marriage was so sweet and kind. He was so much a part of her story, and so much a part of her success. I was so inspired by their relationship, their encouragement and support for one another, and their steadfastness. I must admit that since becoming so disillusioned with Julie Powell and her marriage, I think I was doubly grateful to see Julia's marriage and husband so cherished.

I did listen to an audio version, and the only trouble I had with it was the fact that I already knew what Julia Child's voice sounds like. And the reader, to her credit, did not try to imitate that. It threw me off at first, but in no time, I was swept away by the story and the writing and Julia's "voice" shone through.

Has anyone read it? What did you think? What about reading it along with Julia and Julie (either the book or the movie)? How do these three works and two lives inform one another?

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