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Love, Loss, and What We Ate : A Memoir Hardcover – 18 Apr 2016
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“Startlingly honest… Not only is it a deeply revealing and personal book, but an evocative one filled with lovely turns of phrase.” (Daily Beast)
“[A] surprisingly engrossing memoir/tell-all/cookbook.” (AV Club)
“[An] appealing new memoir...The savoring of meals and snacks can be described as evocatively as the preparation.” (USA Today)
“[An] open, thoughtful memoir.” (Seattle Times)
“An absorbing memoir… An intimate, revealing portrait, far different from the woman blazoned in the tabloids.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“[A] substantial and edgy memoir, LOVE, LOSS, AND WHAT WE ATE, stands out amid the ebb and flow of today’s global celebrity-consciousness as the work of someone seriously dedicated to multiple achievements…. This is a true gem of a memoir for reading, tasting, sharing and learning.” (Book Reporter)
“There is more to the memoir than Lakshmi’s turbulent personal life. She also writes lovingly of her mother and extended maternal family in India.” (Los Angeles Times)
From the Back Cover
A vivid memoir of food and family, survival and triumph, Love, Loss, and What We Ate traces the arc of Padma Lakshmi’s unlikely path from an immigrant childhood to a complicated life in front of the camera—a tantalizing blend of Ruth Reichl’s Tender at the Bone and Nora Ephron’s Heartburn
Long before Padma Lakshmi ever stepped onto a television set, she learned that how we eat is an extension of how we love, how we comfort, how we forge a sense of home—and how we taste the world as we navigate our way through it. Shuttling between continents as a child, she lived a life of dislocation that would become habit as an adult, never quite at home in the world. And yet, through all her travels, her favorite food remained the simple rice she first ate sitting on the cool floor of her grandmother’s kitchen in South India.
Poignant and surprising, Love, Loss, and What We Ate is Lakshmi’s extraordinary account of her journey from that humble kitchen, ruled by ferocious and unforgettable women, to the judges’ table of Top Chef and beyond. It chronicles the fierce devotion of the remarkable people who shaped her along the way, from her headstrong mother who flouted conservative Indian convention to make a life in New York, to her Brahmin grandfather—a brilliant engineer with an irrepressible sweet tooth—to the man seemingly wrong for her in every way who proved to be her truest ally. A memoir rich with sensual prose and punctuated with evocative recipes, it is alive with the scents, tastes, and textures of a life that spans complex geographies both internal and external.
Love, Loss, and What We Ate is an intimate and unexpected story of food and family—both the ones we are born to and the ones we create—and their enduring legacies.See all Product description
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When I finished reading her memoir I was struck by how superficial my knowledge and impression had been about her.....she has led a dazzling and famous life but it was also in equal measure a hard life be it growing up as an Indian immigrant in US and facing bullying and hazing at school, living without her biological father, a life scarring car accident at the age of 14 and in her teens and adulthood living with the pain of endometrosis (diagnosed very late ) - the treatment of which involved several surgeries.
The book opens not in a chronological fashion but with how she met Salman, their affair, marriage and divorce...you the reader is immediately hooked on...the book then goes into her childhood, days spent growingn in her grandparents house in chennai and the flavours and spices she came to love and eat
Her modelling days in europe and trysts with food experiments and her coming back to America and building her career again and ultimately hosting Top Chef all make for very interesting reading. Her favourite recipes are also given- (The only part I didn't care for). Along the way the men who came into her life and exited and her constant effort to maintain her dual identity of belonging to both east and west too are fascinating. No doubt the most important event during the later part of her life was the birth of her daughter Krishna when doctors had told she may never conceive.
All in all a brilliantly written honest to the core memoir which can make you teary eyed too in certain places....every woman And man should read this book!!!
The packed narrative can be a bit intimidating to men, but women I think, will read this all the way through and call it a good read. Would do a world of good to men as well, especially the endometriosis experience, which hopefully will elicit their empathy for women who may or may not suffer from this condition, but who do undergo hormonal issues during 'those days' and who need patience and understanding from the men in their lives.
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