Morning, all! I'm a stop on the TLC tour for Erica Bauermeister's The Lost Art of Mixing today.
Readers return to old favorites at Lillian's and meet some new ones as well in this follow up to Erica Bauermeister's The School of Essential Ingredients. Lillian and Tom are back and have been dating for the past year. While some of the hurdles of their relationship have been dealt with, there are new ones right around the corner. Chloe and Isabelle also return. Chloe has taken up residence with Isabelle since leaving her boyfriend. She's also training as Lillian's protege and helping Isabelle as her condition worsens. We also meet Al, Lillian's accountant, and Louise, his very unhappy wife. Then there's Finnegan, the new dishwasher at the restaurant, and Abby, one of Isabelle's daughters.
I am so glad that I read The School of Essential Ingredients before diving into The Lost Art of Mixing. I don't think that it's absolutely necessary, but as I mentioned in my review of School, neither of these books is a standard novel. Instead they are both made up of short stories connected through Lillian and her restaurant, each story focused on a different character. Having read School first prepared me for this with Lost Art of Mixing and I was able to enjoy it much more as a result.
I was also pleased to return to Lillian, Tom, Chloe, and Isabelle. My only issue with School was that I wanted more of the characters' tales, Lillian in particular. By bringing them back in Lost Art of Mixing, I finally got what I'd wanted out of School.
As a whole I think I also enjoyed the characters more in this follow up. Finnegan and Al were both so charming and quirky, more so than some of the other characters left behind in School of Essential Ingredients.
Both books are filled with Bauermeister's beautiful prose. She certainly knows how to spin a captivating and rich tale. I guess if my biggest complaint is that I want more, that's not a bad thing!
The Lost Art of Mixing is due out on Jan 24.
For more on the author and her work, visit her official website here. You can also like her on Facebook.
To see what others on the tour thought, visit the official TLC tour page here.