Compromise Cake: Lessons Learned from My Mother's Recipe Box

Compromise Cake: Lessons Learned from My Mother's Recipe Box

by Nancy Spiller

NOOK Book(eBook)


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After her mother's death in 2007, Nancy Spiller discovered her mother's teaching credential buried in a recipe box. Her mother had taught for only one year before marrying and having four children. Spiller realized that she had probably been her mother's best and only student in the kitchen.

Compromise Cake explores Spiller's life in the suburbs in Northern California in the 1960's, learning to cook by her mother's side, as remembered through the recipe box. It touches on lineage and industrial changes; it is a meditation on men, women, marriage and the concept of compromise.

What emerges is a portrait of someone whose hopes, dreams and desires for herself as a a career woman, writer, and artist were stifled by the pressure to pursue the conventional female roles of wife and mother, but who found expression through her daughter, an author and artist. A memoir that extends beyond the relationship between Spiller and her mother, the book is universal for all mothers and daughters – and what, as they say, is baked into the cake.

This has been illustrated by the author with more than a dozen color illustrations.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781619026872
Publisher: Catapult
Publication date: 05/01/2015
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 160
File size: 11 MB
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About the Author

Nancy Spiller is a writer and artist currently living in Los Angeles. A third generation California native, she was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and is a graduate of San Francisco State University. She served as staff feature writer at the San Jose Mercury News and its Sunday magazine, West , and at the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. She was editor and internationally syndicated columnist for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate's Entertainment News Service. Her essays and articles have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers including the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine, McCall's, Mother Jones,, and Coagula Art Journal. Her fiction has appeared in the Rain City Review.

She has studied art at the Pasadena Art Center College of Design and UCLA. Her recent installation and exhibition at L.A. Contemporary Gallery in Culver City, "Reverse Trash Streams: The Junk Mail Project," featured 157 pounds of shredded junk mail, the result of one year's worth collected at her home, accompanied by her Shredded series of paintings and drawings. Art in America lauded it for its humor, resigned pathos and concern with "larger social issues."

She lives with her husband Tom, their dog and two cats at the edge of a preserved coastal canyon on Los Angeles' wild western edge.

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