A feast for the eyes, a feast for the heart, a feast for the (virtual) mouth....Keeping the Feast has something to please all of your senses in one way or another. This is a true recollection of life and love...triumph and tragedy...and simply learning to do the best with what one is given...told through that medium that brings us all together...food! Let's face it, it's the one thing that everyone needs and most people enjoy. It's the universal similarity between each of us that can just as easily start a war as it can also bring it to an abrupt halt. The trials of which the author speaks that both she and her family (both extended and blood-relation) experienced will touch your heart, while the food that she recants the tale through will have your mouth watering for more. Follow along as Paula Butturini and John Tagliabue face the world head-on even if at times illness in its many forms forced one or the other to take a back seat approach. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll be hungry for more (I mean story-wise as well as food wise!).
When I submitted my request for the opportunity to review this book, I was drawn by two things. First of all, the summary (HA! Gotcha! Betcha thought I was going to say the cover, right?). My heritage being a mix of both Northern and Southern Italian, and the mainstay of the events taking place in or around Italy as well as the US.....it simply called to me. With the amount of details surrounding the sites, sounds, smells, tastes, and people, it is as close as one can come to the real life version without stepping foot on a plane. The second reason for my requesting this title was the cover and title combination. Though quiet in its use of subtle tones and font styling, it is that simple beauty that captured my attention and drew me in for a closer look. It seemed to say to me...I have a story to share. Come closer so that I may whisper it in your hear and allow you to experience the savory memories that I alone can share. (Yep, it was wordy, but insistant!)
Those two initial desires satiated, my heart and mind were open to the story being told. Underneath the flourish of mouth-watering descriptions and hearty appetites, I discovered the emotional tale of two lives intertwined and yet held separate at times by fate. We start out with a hardship over a disbanded marriage, move into the joy and promise of a new life and love, dabble in the mysteries of a mind beset by its own overwhelming emotions, and in the end settle on a focus more about the quality of a life existing than of worry about tomorrow. They travelled the world, encountering life in its many forms; experiencing both the highs and lows offered....all the while, they held steadfast to the love they both shared that would tether them to each new day. If ever a tale of perserverance, strength, and love existed, you would be hard pressed to displace this new found gem for it's not just the story that enchants...it's the ease of which it is related to the masses through a love and appreciation for food.
ARC for review received via Shelf Awareness and Lydia at Riverhead Books. For information on either party, feel free to click through the links included.....and of course, they can also be found on Twitter! (here and here)
Until next time....happy reading!