A Year Right Here: Adventures with Food and Family in the Great Nearby

A Year Right Here: Adventures with Food and Family in the Great Nearby

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Overview

Armed with “The Here List” and a Type-A personality, Seattle-based writer and cookbook author Jess Thomson sets out to spend a year exploring the food of the Pacific Northwest with her family. Planning to revel in the culinary riches of the region and hoping to break her son, Graham, of his childhood pickiness, the adventures into the great nearby include building a backyard chicken coop, truffle hunting in Oregon, and razor clamming on the Washington coast. Her plans to spend “a year right here” are complicated by efforts to help Graham overcome some of the mobility limitations of cerebral palsy, and thwarted further by her own limitations that come to the fore when she attempts the “Gourmet Century,” a hilly one-hundred-kilometer bike ride with gourmet food stops along the way.

With touching, funny, sometimes devastating stories that we all can relate to, Jess pulls the reader in as she abandons “The Here List” and learns that letting go can be just as important as holding on.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780295741543
Publisher: University of Washington Press
Publication date: 04/03/2017
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Jess Thomson is a freelance writer and the author of Dishing Up Washington, Pike Place Market Recipes, and Top Pot Hand-Forged Doughnuts; and coauthor of A Boat, a Whale, and a Walrus.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Staying Put

1. January
-The House That Jack Built
-The Rarest Breed

2. February
-Digging Deep

3. March
-You’ve Got to Be Kidding

4. April
-Spoon-Fed

5. May
-On Parking-Lot Barbecue

6. June
-The Other Western Wine Country

7. July
-The Gourmet Century

8. August
-The Manhattan Project
-Trial by Fire
-The Opposite of Ilwaco

9. September

10. October
-What Would Jesus Brew?

11. November
-Chronicles of a Coffee Lover
-Slow Dog Noodle

12. December
-To Market, to Market

13. January, Again
-Found in Translation

Epilogue: A Year Right Here
Index of Recipes

What People are Saying About This

Claire Dederer

A Year Right Here weaves together sharp observation, emotional candor, and strong characterization. In telling the story of her year at home, Jess Thomson illuminates our corner of the world.

Cheryl Sternman Rule

Expertly weaving the trials and travails of daily life—one filled with alternating bouts of triumph and struggle—with her yearlong exploration of the Pacific Northwest’s edible gems, Thomson invites the reader into her imperfect, thoroughly genuine world. Her writing is never indulgent, never treacly, always honest. She makes the quotidian both remarkable and universal, garnishing each beautifully-crafted phrase with a dose of unsentimental realism.

From the Publisher

"Jess is a smart, funny, straight-shooting writer with a great sense for food, and her A Year Right Here is no exception."—Molly Wizenberg, author of A Homemade Life and Delancey

"A Year Right Here weaves together sharp observation, emotional candor, and strong characterization. In telling the story of her year at home, Jess Thomson illuminates our corner of the world."—Claire Dederer, author of Poser: My Life in Twenty-Three Yoga Poses

"A book about parenting, food, and letting go, Jess Thomson's writing is full of emotion, wit and truth. This book strikes me to the core as I see myself reflected in the incongruence and beauty of daily life and our obsession with food and cooking."—Aran Goyoaga, author of Small Plates & Sweet Treats: My Family's Journey to Gluten-Free Cooking and creator of Cannelle et Vanille

"Expertly weaving the trials and travails of daily life—one filled with alternating bouts of triumph and struggle—with her yearlong exploration of the Pacific Northwest's edible gems, Thomson invites the reader into her imperfect, thoroughly genuine world. Her writing is never indulgent, never treacly, always honest. She makes the quotidian both remarkable and universal, garnishing each beautifully-crafted phrase with a dose of unsentimental realism."—Cheryl Sternman Rule, author of Yogurt Cultureand Ripe

Aran Goyoaga

A book about parenting, food, and letting go, Jess Thomson's writing is full of emotion, wit and truth. This book strikes me to the core as I see myself reflected in the incongruence and beauty of daily life and our obsession with food and cooking.

Molly Wizenberg

Jess is a smart, funny, straight-shooting writer with a great sense for food, and her A Year Right Here is no exception.

Interviews

Armed with “The Here List” and a Type A personality, Seattle-based writer and cookbook author Jess Thomson sets out to spend a year exploring the food of the Pacific Northwest with her family, planning to revel in the culinary riches of the spot she calls home and encourage her young son, who has cerebral palsy, to hatch out of what she sees as childhood pickiness. It begins as a physical adventure into the great nearby, with stories that chronicle building a backyard chicken coop, truffle hunting in Oregon, and razor clamming on the Washington coast with pith, humor, and entertaining insight into the region’s personality. As the story progresses, we learn about five-year-old Graham’s daily struggles with learning to walk, and watch as Jess essentially realizes she can’t treat CP with food, no matter how good it is. Jess recognizes that dictating what her kid should eat isn’t the best approach, and begins to focus on venturing out without him. Just as solo excursions like cycling in an unfamiliar wine country lead Jess to address her own emotional and physical limitations, Graham undergoes surgery on both legs. Traveling anywhere with Graham becomes impossible, or, at least, impractical, and the concept of “right here” becomes more about exploring an emotional home than a physical one. With touching, sometimes devastating stories that are relatable for all parents, Jess pulls the reader into Graham’s recovery, and her abandonment of The Here List becomes a metaphor for Jess letting go. In the end, for Jess, leaving becomes just as important as staying.

Customer Reviews