VISIBLE EMPIRE by HANNAH PITTARD

Visible Empire

It’s a humid June day when the phones begin to ring in Atlanta: disaster has struck. Air France Flight 007, which had been chartered to ferry home more than one hundred of Atlanta’s cultural leaders following a luxurious arts-oriented tour of Europe, crashed shortly after takeoff in Paris. In one fell swoop, many of the city’s wealthiest residents perished.

Left behind were children, spouses, lovers, friends, and a city on the cusp of great change: the Civil Rights movement was at its peak, the hedonism of the 60s was at its doorstep. In Hannah Pittard’s dazzling and most ambitious novel yet, she gives us the journeys of those who must now rebuild this place and their lives.

Visible Empire follows the chaos—and hope—that remained in the wake of the crash, and the truths that became evident because of it. This is a story about how we choose to look at the world, and those moments when we finally see it for what it is—whether we’re ready for that clarity or not.

Over 100 art lovers, patrons, and journalists from Atlanta, Georgia have been killed in the horrific crash of Air France at Orly. Leaving behind family and friends to grieve.

Told from multiple points of view, we follow Robert and his wife Lily. Robert has been a very bad boy and has just told Lily about his affair with a fellow reporter and has been promptly kicked to the curb. Lily is in the last stages of pregnancy when she finds out the next day that she has lost her parents in the crash as well.

The 1960’s in Atlanta were a tense time. Racial lines had been drawn and to cross over them meant certain death. But young black men are tired of waiting for things to change and some take to violence.

Their are all kinds of people taking advantage of the tragedy of the crash. From the young to the old enough to know better.

We hear the story of the Mayor trying his best to help, but I’m still not sure what was up with the wife.

Others who have found themselves suddenly wealthy are getting drunk and high and spinning quickly out of control and you just feel the tension in the air around each character. Tragedy has a way of changing a person but whether it is for the better is not a foregone conclusion.

This was a bit wordy for me. I thought Lily and Piedmont’s characters were the strongest and most honest. The rest of them were like vultures circling roadkill. Not a pretty sight. And as for the ending, I’m not sure what that was.

Being born and raised in Georgia I had read about this event in school. It was shocking and changed a lot of lives forever.

Try it for yourself and let me know what you thought!

Netgalley/une 5th 2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Advertisements

Dinner Chez Moi by Elizabeth Bard

Dinner Chez Moi: 50 French Secrets to Joyful Eating and Entertaining by [Bard, Elizabeth]

Tips, tricks and recipes to make your feasts and fetes more French, from the New York Times bestselling author of Lunch in Paris and Picnic in Provence
When Elizabeth Bard, a New Yorker raised on Twizzlers and instant mac and cheese, fell for a handsome Frenchman and moved to Paris, she discovered a whole new world of culinary delights. First in Paris, then in a tiny village in Provence, Elizabeth explored the markets, incorporating new ingredients and rituals into her everyday meals and routines.

After 15 years of cooking in her own French kitchen, making French friends–and observing her slim and elegant French mother-in-law–Elizabeth has gathered a treasure trove of information that has radically changed her own eating habits for the better. She realized that what most Americans call “dieting”–smaller portions, no snacking, a preference for seasonal fruits and vegetables, and limited sugar–the French simply call “eating.” And they do it with pleasure, gusto, and flair.

With wit, sound advice, and easy-to-follow recipes, Bard lets her readers in on a range of delightful–and useful–French secrets to eating and living well, including hunger as the new foreplay, the top five essential French cooking tools and 15 minute meals popular throughout France, and the concept of benevolent dictatorship: why French kids eat veggies, and how to get yours to eat them, too. Whether you’re ready for a complete kitchen transformation or simply looking for dinner party inspiration, Dinner Chez Moi is a fun, practical, and charming how-to guide that will add a dash of joie de vivre to your kitchen–and your life!

Ms. Bard is a very interesting woman! I have her books Lunch in Paris and Picnic in Provence, both full of France, food and love.

She is not a fussy chef. She is a cook, who after being raised on the typical American Fare,adjusted her sails and learned how to cook and eat like the people around her do.

This book is full of basic and easy recipes utilizing the 50 Secrets of a French kitchen. And they could not be any simpler. This new book came out in April.

Charming and Delicious, it’s a win-win!

xx Patricia