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(article, Liz Crain)
It took years of coddling before the writer Alex Prud’homme convinced his great-aunt, Julia Child, to do a book project about her formative culinary and romantic years in France. Although always willing to raise a celebratory glass or break bread with friends and family, Child was not as eager to pick up a pen after years of working diligently with editors and publishers to compose a veritable library of French cooking. But in 2003, Prud’homme and a then-90-year-old Child set to work transcribing memories from the years (roughly 1948 to 1954) when Child lived in France with her husband, Paul Child, and discovered that country’s cooking. The bulk of this well-written, often poetic memoir is set within the walls of the Cordon Bleu, where Child was an indefatigable student of French cooking; among the pages, splattered with meticulous trial and error, of Child’s revolutionary cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. 1; and in the romantic, lifelong embrace of Julia and Paul Child. The true tale of an American culinary icon, My Life in France is a straight-from-the-heart love story peppered with the brazen and playful language for which Child will always be remembered. p(bio). Liz Crain is a writer based in Portland, Oregon.