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Minette's Feast: The Delicious Story of Julia Child and Her Cat

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Overview

Minette?s Feast introduces the iconic American chef Julia Child to a new audience of young readers through the story of her spirited cat, Minette, whom Julia adopted when living in Paris. While Julia is in the kitchen learning to master delicious French dishes, the only feast Minette is truly interested in is that of fresh mouse! This lively story is complete with an author?s note, a bibliography, and actual quotations from Julia Child and comes just in time for the 100th ...
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Overview

Minette’s Feast introduces the iconic American chef Julia Child to a new audience of young readers through the story of her spirited cat, Minette, whom Julia adopted when living in Paris. While Julia is in the kitchen learning to master delicious French dishes, the only feast Minette is truly interested in is that of fresh mouse! This lively story is complete with an author’s note, a bibliography, and actual quotations from Julia Child and comes just in time for the 100th anniversary of her birth.

Praise for Minette's Feast

“Foodie parents who love cats will love to read this delightful book to their kids.”
The Atlantic

“This charming portrait...”
Publishers Weekly
"A delectable tale about Julia Child discovering her culinary calling in Paris...This book is a charmer to share aloud with young people who enjoy a well-paced story and with cat lovers and food lovers of any age."
Horn Book

"A charming picture book."
The New York Times Sunday Book Review

"Amy Bates uses pencil and watercolor to crate artwork that is as playful as Minette the cat."
Library Media Connection

STARRED REVIEWS

“A fine recipe for pleasure: Julia Child, the culinary arts, Paris and a lucky cat. Magnifique!”
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Bates’ illustrations work marvelously well with this charming conceit."
Booklist, starred review

"Reich's internal rhymes make the proceedings feel festive, while her overall prose conveys Julia's seriousness of purpose. The smooth flow of her narrative belies the impressive amount of research she undertook to relate actual conversations and events...Discover: A delectable banquet that charts Julia Child's culinary progress through the eyes of her cat, Minette."
Shelf Awareness, starred review
 
“...feast for the senses” —School Library Journal, starred review

Award
Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC) Choices 2013 list - Picture Book

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Modest in scope, this cozy biography of Julia Child uses her cat, Minette, to introduce the master chef to young audiences. The tortoiseshell stray hangs around the edges of the first few spreads that depict Julia and her husband exploring Paris. Reich’s (Painting the Wild Frontier) lyrical prose is playful; its rhythmic and sometimes alliterative language quickly advances the lighthearted tale. Julia “baked and blanched, blended and boiled, drained and dried, dusted and fried,” and, later, the picky Minette (after sampling one of Julia’s creations) “frisked and flounced.... danced and pranced.” The author admittedly takes literary license with some details, such as the implication that Julia takes classes at Le Cordon Bleu in order to meet Minette’s finicky tastes. The hues of Bates’s (Bear in the Air) muted watercolors—buttery yellows, golds, and slate blue-greens—lend a French feel, as does an early painting of Minette in which she’s made to resemble the feline from Steinlen’s famous “Chat Noir” poster. This charming portrait concludes with a glossary of French words, an afterword, and author notes. Ages 4–8. Agent: Edward Necarsulmer IV, McIntosh & Otis. Illustrator’s agent: Shannon Associates. (May)
School Library Journal
Gr 2–4—Using quotations from source materials that include Child's autobiography and letters, Reich crafts the story of how the addition of the new family cat coincided with the woman's first steps toward her magnificent culinary career. As she visits the markets, begins classes at Le Cordon Bleu, and experiments with a new recipe, Minette is there at her heels. Sophisticated cat that she is, she is often shown in a svelte feline pose (even on a chair at the dinner table) except for a spread on which she pounces on a leftover bone. Besides the cat's antics, the text also describes the markets, cooking smells, and ambience of Paris so well that it is easy to see how Child was inspired to write Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Using a color palette similar to Toulouse-Lautrec's paintings, Bates's pencil and watercolor illustrations support this feast for the senses.—Joanna K. Fabicon, Los Angeles Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Reich lures children into the scrumptious Parisian world of the legendary chef Julia Child with the story of her mouse-loving cat, Minette. It's a funny thought: The now-famous American gourmet painstakingly prepares duck pâtés and cheese soufflés with the freshest French ingredients when all her cat really wants to eat is raw mouse: "How delightful the crunch of fresh-caught mouse, devoured on the living room rug!" Even if readers have never heard of Julia Child or the delightful interlude she and her husband Paul shared in Paris in the late 1940s, the joy of an enthusiastic food-lover in the kitchen is palpable: "She floured and flipped, pitted and plucked, rinsed and roasted, sizzled and skimmed." Bates' inventively composed kitchen- and marketscapes in warm watercolors and pencil capture this joy as well, as readers see the very-tall, very-cheerful cook in action. The atmospheric narrative is festive, fresh and festooned with quotations from Julia and Paul's letters, as well as from Child's memoir, My Life in France (2006). As revealed in the afterword, Minette Mimosa McWilliams Child was an actual adopted tortoiseshell cat, the first of many cats for the loving couple. A fine recipe for pleasure: Julia Child, the culinary arts, Paris and a lucky cat. Magnifique! (afterword, notes, sources, glossary and pronunciation guide, author's note) (Picture book/biography. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781419701771
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2012
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 258,700
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.60 (w) x 9.70 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Susanna Reich is an award-winning author of many fiction and nonfiction books. She lives in Ossining, New York. Visit www.susannareich.com. Amy Bates is the illustrator of The Dog Who Belonged to No One and Bear in the Air. She splits her time between the United States and Tokyo.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 15, 2012

    This is a sweet children's book that tells the story of Julia Ch

    This is a sweet children's book that tells the story of Julia Child's time in Paris from her cat's point of view. Though Minette, the cat, is presented with numerous, delectable treats created in Julia's kitchen, she still prefers her favourite meal of all, Mouse. My kids loved the slight ryhming of the test and the various french phrases scattered throughout. I loved all the cooking references and the beautiful illustrations. I said I bought the book for my kids, but secretly it was for me.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2012

    What a wonderful way to introduce Julia Child to children. The

    What a wonderful way to introduce Julia Child to children. The text makes both kids and grown-ups smile and the illustrations are beautiful. My kids loved it!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 27, 2012

    sorry

    Sorry, but I returned the book. It was nothing like I expected. It was more like a childrens book.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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