Authors Showcase: The Perfect Recipe by Valerie Gaumont


The Book: The Perfect Recipe

The Author: Valerie Gaumont

The Story: Is normal what she really wants?

Christine Walker thought she had life figured out. She was a chef who ran a successful restaurant, but then the bottom dropped out of her world after she was betrayed by her business partner.

Down on her luck, and unable to find a new job, Christine is forced to move back in with her parents. Once home, her plans to get back on her feet become a real problem when her scheming mother and her merry band of well-meaning cohorts, the local garden club, the farmer’s market manager, and a cooking class filled with everyone except young ladies challenge Christine to an odd and uneventful life.

Getting back to business as usual is harder than it looks. For Christine, she has no idea what she’ll do.

About Valerie Gaumont:

Valerie Gaumont
Valerie Gaumont

Valerie Gaumont is an evil genius whose mission is to take over the world. Her latest efforts were thwarted when her flying monkey army discovered beer. Currently they are in Rehab because no one likes a drunk flying monkey. (Thank you for your cards and letters of support.)

When she is taking a break from villainy she can often be found with a pen in her hand. Yes, sometimes she is doodling, other times writing fiction and discovering new and interesting ways to combine reality with the outré.

She has had short stories in the Violet Ampersand Anthology, Poetry, Prose and Other Voyages to the Edge, and the online Journal, Gothic Fairytales for Melancholy Children. In 2007 she was listed as a finalist in the William Faulkner International Writing Competition in the Novel-In-Progress category.

Review by Felicity Price:

Christine packs her life and her belongings into her small hatchback, waves goodbye to boyfriend Ben, and drives all the way home to her parents’ where her old room is exactly as she left it before a stellar career as a chef, which went horribly wrong when cheating, gambling no-good Charlie because her business partner and swindled her out of most of the takings.

But Charlie doesn’t want to stop there – he’s decided Christine owes him more still, so he steals the remaining hardware in the rented kitchen and exacts further revenge by ringing up all the restaurants around town and bad-mouthing her so she’ll never get a job there again.

So the scene is set for a convincing drama where Christine’s mother Evie plays an almost fairy-godmother role (not that Christine would agree with that) by setting up a herb-growing and catering business for her daughter right in her own back yard. Using her recently deceased grandmother Isabella’s cottage – and frequently checking with Isabella’s portrait if she’s doing the right thing – Christine soon finds her heart belongs more and more to her home town and less to the big city where Ben is still making a play for her.

But then there’s the neighboring good-looker, Bill, Christine’s cooking school for young ladies that seems to attract mainly men, and the society matron Faith who wants her to cater for an upcoming charity dinner. And all the time, there’s the menace of Charlie, determined to get his own back.

Will he sabotage the charity dinner? Will he make off with Christine’s hard-earned cash? You’ll have to read this rollercoaster of a book to find out.

Review by ValiantM:

This was a great story, and I found myself quickly identifying with not only the situation but the main character Christine.

Now I must say I’m a married man with three kids, but I felt like Christine’s story was somehow a mirror of some events that had happened to me. It was nice reading it and seeing things aren’t always as bad as they seem at the time.

The writing is strong, and has no trouble pulling you into the well developed world. I’m not sure if Author Valerie Gaumont intended so many humorous parts. Or perhaps they seemed humorous to me because of how well the mimicked the familiar. Right down to her overbearing mother, and loving father’s quirks.

Overall this is a warm journey of a defeated woman finding herself with the help of friends and family. Learning what is truly important and not letting one little stumble in life ruin it all.

I can recommend this to anyone really. I may be the rare breed of men that enjoy women’s fiction, but it is a real gem.


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