On Wednesday September 12, we’ll meet to discuss Nora Ephron’s 1983 novel “Heartburn” for the Brooklyn Kitchen Book Club. If you don’t have a copy of Heartburn yet, stop by this weekend and pick one up! It’s a quick read (and we won’t judge if you can’t make it through the book before the meeting). Sign up online or in the store.
Here’s a few words about “Heartburn” from Cara Cannella, our current book club facilitator:
The story (which I adore) is inspired by her real-life divorce from Watergate journalist Carl Bernstein and written from the point of view of a very pregnant food writer with a philandering second husband. I’m curious to hear what you think of it and hope you can join us next week (Sign up here).
Knowing our ever-growing group, my crystal ball tells me there will be lots of laughter – the book is especially hilarious for New Yorkers, with its inside jokes about the city – and a longing
to have Nora in the room. In my dreams, she brings a key lime pie to our potluck (if you’ve reached the end of the book, you know why) and joins us in the shop’s upstairs kitchen, surrounded by shelves of cookbooks and KitchenAid mixers in a rainbow of colors and the smell of something delicious wafting up from The Meat Hook or a baking class downstairs. That’s where we’ll meet to drink wine and eat good food and talk about books and food policy and recipes and much, much more. Most recently, we’ve read Tamar Adler’s “An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace,” followed by the work that inspired it, M.F.K. Fisher’s classic “How to Cook a Wolf.”
Given Nora Ephron’s love of language and gift for creating community around cooking, it was inevitable that we’d read her. Since digesting “Heartburn” and the moving New Yorker tribute by her friend Lena Dunham in the wake of her death in June, I’ve been under the delusion that I knew Nora. “I see her in the worst hair moments and the best soup moments,” Dunham writes. “I know I am only one of hundreds of women, people, who will miss Nora’s company, and millions who will miss her voice.”
That voice – that insightful and quick and self-deprecating voice – is what makes her work so powerful and unforgettable. In my experience moderating this food-focused book club (and another one I ran for years), the feeling of intimate companionship generated by great writing tends to lead to great conversation. I hope you can join us for it this Wednesday and on 10/17 for Jay McInerney’s book “The Juice.”
Cara Cannella is editor of Biographile.com, founder of the live event series Speak Easy: Conversations with Artists & Entrepreneurs, and current facilitator of The Brooklyn Kitchen Book Club. She has written about food for The L magazine and Edible Communities. Her idea of heaven: a hammock, a good book, mango with lime, and a cold beer.