Julie & Julia: 365 days, 524 recipes, 1 tiny apartment kitchen
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Julie & Julia: 365 days, 524 recipes, 1 tiny apartment kitchen

3.58 of 5 stars 3.58  ·  rating details  ·  91,015 ratings  ·  6,631 reviews
With the humor of Bridget Jones and the vitality of Augusten Burroughs, Julie Powell recounts how she conquered every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking and saved her soul.

Julie Powell is 30-years-old, living in a rundown apartment in Queens and working at a soul-sucking secretarial job that's going nowhere. She needs something to break the monoto...more
Paperback, 309 pages
Published September 28th 2005 by Bullfinch Press (first published 2003)
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devra
it seemed so simple, and so brilliant and so the perfect type of book for me, i remember thinking as i perused--i forget what, probably the new york times--and saw a reference to julie powell's julie and julia project.

a woman who dedicated her year to learning how to cook.
like me. i hoped for inspiration--for my writing, for my cooking, for ideas that i could incorporate into both.

i immediately ordered a copy. or maybe i went straight to borders after work. i started reading the night i got it....more
La Petite Américaine
Author Julia Powell is a mix of many people. From page one when she tells us she sold her own eggs to pay off credit debt, she is much like the dreaded person seated next to you on a long-haul flight that proceeds to tell you their life story in a matter of minutes. She is also the TMI girl that we all know, who contemplates the smell of her burps and piss, bitches incessantly about her job and Republicans, describes smelly cocks, drinks too many cocktails, tells us she sleeps with her face on h...more
Jennifer
Aug 17, 2007 Jennifer rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No One
I love the concept, I really do; not so much the finished product.

Had she not made the fuuny reference to my favorite line in Casablanca near the begininning of the book, I never would have been able to finish it. The thought of finding another gem like that made me stick with it even when I wanted to throw Julie out of a twenty-story window. The whiny, self-absorbed, melodramtic, narcissistic, trite (yet on occasion deliciously funny) Julie Powell decides to take up a project to add meaning to...more
Jonathan
I read The Scavengers Guide to Haute Cuisine, and I really liked it. I figured this book would be along the same lines. Yeah, well, it wasn't. Instead of a book about cooking, it was a book about a whiny, pseudo-intellectual woman who tries to cook because her life is otherwise crappy. Please tell me how cooking an entire Julia Child cookbook will improve your life. Actually, don't, because that is the premise for this book and it sucked.

Oh, and reading about her husband was cringe-worthy. This...more
Katie
Completely and utterly disappointing.

I was so in love with the idea that Julie came up with: to recreate each of the 524 recipes in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I never had read her blog before, and my expectations for the book were high.

Unfortunately, Julie is a completely repulsive, unappealing and vulgar human being. Her self-deprecating - humor, was it? - didn't make me find her charmingly witty; rather, I just believed what she was telling me and decided that she was i...more
Anneke
If you want to read about the very self-absorbed author, this book might be a good fit for you. If you want to read about cooking Julia Child's food, go elsewhere.
D
Mar 27, 2009 D rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of chick lit, fans of self-flagellation, fans of maggots
Recommended to D by: Janet
Julie disappointed me. Her tone was tired (I've rassled too many self-loathing Gen Xers who think that airing their dirty laundry is fresh and shocking; it's not; ever heard of reality TV? it's merely degrading; if it's dime-store therapy you're seeking via the blogosphere, good luck getting stable, coherent advice from your comments section). Additionally, she thought insulting her husband was funny, admitting to maggots under her dish drainer a good romp, and marital infidelity blase'. I have...more
Lena
There are some inspired moments in Julie Powell’s memoir of the year she spent cooking all 524 recipes in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Powell can be a very funny writer, and the book is sprinkled with abundant samples of the snarky wit that no doubt made the blog on which this book was based so popular. Her topic is certainly a rich one—the processes of making gelatin from actual calves’ feet or flaying a lobster alive while feeling a generous dose of liberal guilt certainl...more
Christine
Dec 30, 2007 Christine rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who truly love food and no one else
I think there's an unfortunate trend that people follow these days, particularly women, to verbally criticize themselves in a hyper self-aware manner, as if recounting all of their faults (real or imagined)will not only amuse the listener, but prove that they are stoic-even good humored-about being the biggest, fattest, ugliest, ding battiest failures to ever grace the earth.

"Doesn't he get it? Doesn't he understand that if I don't get through the whole book in a year then this whole thing will...more
Jennifer
I have a love/hate relationship with this book. I love the concept- the story of the author working her way through Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking one recipe at a time, skipping nothing. At its root it's a true life adventure- something I can experience vicariously.

On the other hand, sometimes the execution is flawed. (I *really* didn't want to know about the maggot infestation in the author's kitchen, I know my kitchen isn't perfectly hygenic. But maggots under the dish drai...more
Firecooked
The book is written by Julie Powell, about her 1 year self-imposed challenge to cook everything in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of Fine Cooking. The project was motivated by feeling stuck in her job (a low level drone in a government office) as well as rebellion towards the whole Alice Waters, locovore, trendy foodie things. I instantly connected with the author – she was a Buffy the Vampire fan (the blog was going on during the last season), found the act of preparing food very sensual, and...more
Julie
Julie Powell was a 29 year-old temp living in the outer boroughs and suffering from late-20s ennui and the kind of despair that comes from hating your career and thinking you should have done more with yourself by now. To give herself a goal - something I can very much sympathize with - she decided she would make all 524 recipes in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking in one year. She also started a blog to chronicle her (mis)adventures. This book is an outgrowth of that experienc...more
Petra X
I can see how this book was a successful blog, its more a series of snacks than a grand a la carte meal in a French restaurant. The endless repetition of her hatred for Republicans (if you aren't an American, which I'm not, this doesn't make a lot of sense) and her job (if you've ever been a secretary, which I was, this does) and the use of her favourite words fuck and suck, neither of them used sexually, probably give you the flavour of this slight one-note book. A snarky, sarky, endlessly-whin...more
Stefani
To me this is a book about finding sanity in structure. Julie doesn't know what to do with her life, so she manufactures a project...

By completing at least one new recipe a day, and blogging about it, she finds herself so consumed that she has little time to obsess about her dead-end job, and her possible infertility.

It reminds me a lot of "Rosemary Goes to the Mall," a podcast in which an art instructor makes a project of shopping from and getting a bag from every store in the Mall of America.....more
Diane
Saw the movie - had to read the book. So far, I have my reservations, but I'm not very far in yet.

I read a few more chapters and gave up. The author rambles - and not in a good way. I could not work up any interest in the folks in the book - just didn't care what they did next. Combine that with the author's potty mouth, and it's back to the Library to find a book worth reading - maybe Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child.

This is one of those rare examples of the movie being a lot...more
Wendy
Jun 02, 2008 Wendy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: foodies, peole who need a good laugh or a little inspiration
In order to give her life some definition,(and blinders to the onset of her 30th birthday) Julie Powell decides to cook every recipe from Julia Child's, Mastering the Art of French Cooking Volume One, within one year. She cooks everything from tarts to cow brains in her tiny New York apartment. The book reminded me of Bridget Jones meets, well, Julia Child. It is funny, interesting, and a little inspirational. She is candid with her personal life as well as with the results of what became the Ju...more
JSou
I must've really needed this kind of book right about now. I bought it about a year ago when I saw it on the B&N clearance table, but then shelved it. I've actually been hearing a lot about it lately (I'm sure because of the upcoming film), so I figured I'd give it a shot.

I loved this. I really couldn't put it down. Reading through the author's experiences as she cooks through Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking reminded me of how delicious and sometimes therapeutic cooking a h...more
Jessica
I had started poking around Julie Powell's blog rather late in the game of her writing it, so it was very hard to catch up with her adventures in cooking. I looked forward to the book, which I expected would tighten the diary structure and take us through a cohesive story. Boy, was I disappointed.

This book is a mishmash of anecdotes about Julie Powell's life that spring off of her central narrative without rhyme or reason. I think I could forgive that, if they were interesting anecdotes, but the...more
Lucy
For a few months there, it seemed like everyone was reading this book. Then, just as suddenly, everyone was going to the movie. And liking it!

I wasn't tempted to do either, and felt a bit out-of-sorts being so out of vogue. Still, I knew I didn't care to read about a woman who had tried all of Julia Child's recipes found in "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." Frankly, french cooking turns me off and besides watching Dan Aykroyd satire Julia Child on Saturday Night Live, I didn't really know...more
Andrea Homier
Okay, okay, maybe I was a little too hasty in dismissing this book right away as uninteresting fluff full of the author's self-absorption. What I have to say now is that the book is, well, seriously uneven.

Julie Powell is obviously a literate person with, at times, wide perspectives and the capacity for reflective thought, plus a witty sense of humor when it comes to dissing Republicans, all highly admirable qualities. I just wish one did not have to get through so much tedium to find those lit...more
Allison
I really really liked the premise for this book.

I grew up watching Julia Child on weekends, until my Dad showed me that one SNL clip of her and I thought it was real. I didn't want to risk anymore accidental bloodbaths by watching her show.

Anyway. Love Julia Child, DISLIKED this book. The narrator is whiny, and self-deprecating in a way that I can only assume she thinks is refreshing and funny, but comes off as sad, unholy, step-cousin of Bridget Jones. Her constant exaultation of liberals, and...more
David Jay
Some very cute parts, and well written. Powell is likeable and the book is a quick and easy read. Most of the book is set in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens, which I always like. Powell's apartment at the beginning of the book is a few blocks from where I live.

But I just didn't get it.

This is the story of a bored, depressed temp/secretary who isn't quite sure what to do with her life, wants a baby but isn't sure if she can have one, hates where she lives and so she decides to cook her way throug...more
Benjamin
So I was with my wife when I picked up my copy for the book club at work. And of course she started immediately poking fun at my new taste for chick-lit. I was very quick to my own defense, asserting that as non-fiction, it couldn't possibly be chick-lit so there.

I was wrong. Because it is non-fiction, but not just about cooking. It's about cooking and her marriage and her friends and their marriages and sex lives and her job and her quarterish life crisis. That didn't make me mad though, what r...more
Sara
Jan 02, 2008 Sara rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: whiny, foul-mouthed people with a steel-lined stomach
This was a book that I finished, but didn't really enjoy.

I can appreciate that Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking came along at just the the right time in Julie Powell's life and I can appreciate the difficulty of rounding up Julia's ingredients, like canned onions and marrow bones and I can appreciate the frustration of working in a depressing, post-September 11th setting.

But I could not appreciate the casual mentions of sticky, filthy, cat-hair covered counters and reeking body...more
Susan
There were so many things wrong with this book I just couldn't punish force myself to go on.

Julie is a self-centered, whinny character who is so sad to think she's 29 and is a - wait for it - secretary.

To cope with her short-comings she decides to cook every single recipe in Julia Child's cook book. Well, that is all well and good, but this story is more about the self-absorbed Julie and her endless tantrums and heartless thoughts than about cooking the recipes. These are only mentioned in pa...more
Pineapple
If you read this, just skip over the made up parts about Julia and her husband because they are boring and, well, dumb. I remember Julie from high school and it appears she hasn't changed much. Some of the remarks she made about people from our past were catty and wholly untrue. Not only that, but many parts of the book were poorly written. Edit much? It is sad that after all of this time she just can't get past things that weren't the way she portrayed them at all. She hints at writing a future...more
Brandi Rae

In light of my new mindset on cooking and blogging I decided that the time had finally come to read Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen by Julie Powell (the subtitle of which, given the upcoming movie release, has been unnecessarily changed to My Year of Cooking Dangerously). Julie is a woman who, in response to her unfulfilling job as a secretary and a rapidly approaching 30th birthday, decided that she is going to spend the year cooking every recipe in Julia Child’

...more
Jean
“Julia leaned gamely onto her knuckles like some otherworldly primate god of
kitchens and good humor.”

Within the pages of this rather indulgent book, you can find many brilliant nuggets such as the one above. Though, Julie herself did not write the above brilliance. It was her old friend Isabel, who also happens to be one of her myriad of devoted blog readers (or bleaders as Julie refers to them). In one of many hilarious blog replies deliciously sprinkled throughout the novel.

Now, the relevants...more
doreen
Feb 11, 2008 doreen rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: aspiring cooks in small kitchens, anyone who can appreciate a good home-cooked meal
This book is probably one of the books that set me down the path I am on now in terms of my relationship with food and baking. Not only was I inspired to eventually make a food blog (Tasty Fever!), but I was also given the notion that I didn't need a fancy-shmancy kitchen to turn out amazing stuff.

Julie Powell's story of ambition as a way to find herself through an uncommon means really struck a chord with me at the time I was reading it, and it still does now. As with a lot of memoir work, I ca...more
Juliana Schnur
Bravo!! What a fantastic read! You know a book is delicious when a newly legal Manhattanite swears off a social life in favor of hopping into bed with her new paperback. I must have recommended the book to at least ten strangers who heard my uncontrollable outbursts of laughter and had to know what was making me cackle so heartily. Sometimes reading about those sticks of butter did make me feel a bit oily and full, but that Julie Powell, what a refreshing voice. Her wit and sarcasm and depth of...more
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Julie Powell was born and raised in Austin, Texas, where she first fell in love with cooking — and her husband, Eric. She is the author of a cooking memoir, Julie & Julia, which was released in 2005. Her writing has appeared in Bon Appétit, The New York Times, House Beautiful, and Archaeology Magazine, among others. She lives in Long Island City, Queens.
More about Julie Powell...
Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession Julie si Julia Fort Oglethorpe (Images of America: Georgia) The Quest of the Peace Stone Series: Where Magic and War Thrives

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“But the not-very-highbrow truth of the matter was that the reading was how I got my ya-yas out.

For the sake of my bookish reputation I upgraded to Tolstoy and Steinbeck before I understood them, but my dark secret was that really, I preferred the junk. The Dragonriders of Pern, Flowers in the Attic, The Clan of the Cave Bear. This stuff was like my stash of Playboys under the mattress.”
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“The nice thing about having a friend who is crazier than you are is that she bolsters your belief in your own sanity.” 41 likes
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