BOOK TITLE: Sourdough
BOOK AUTHOR: Robin Sloan
September 5th 2017
GENRES: Contemporary Fiction, Literary Fiction
CHECK IT OUT AT: Goodreads
BUY IT: Buy on Amazon
Lois Clary, a software engineer at a San Francisco robotics company, codes all day and collapses at night. When her favourite sandwich shop closes up, the owners leave her with the starter for their mouthwatering sourdough bread. Lois becomes the unlikely hero tasked to care for it, bake with it and keep this needy colony of microorganisms alive. Soon she is baking loaves daily and taking them to the farmer's market, where an exclusive close-knit club runs the show. When Lois discovers another, more secret market, aiming to fuse food and technology, a whole other world opens up. But who are these people, exactly?
Okay, a little background on me. I grew up in a non-culinary family. Food was food, and we had to eat everyday whether we wanted to or not.
As a young adult, I worked in many restaurants, and became a bit more of a foodie. I dated a couple of chefs, and even married the last one I dated. We’re still married. He’s left the food business and now does interesting work in home renovation and construction.
My husband grew up opposite of me: his family was very culinary. His mom loved to cook and experiment, and she handed her love of food onto her children. Two of her three sons went into the culinary world, and my brother-in-law still works in kitchen, doing wonderful stuff in some of the best kitchens.
Through this marriage, I’ve fallen in love with food. I enjoy cooking and baking, although it’s not as vital to me as it was to my mother-in-law. That’s okay. I follow a bit of the culinary world, and understand there is a bit of a debate between the traditional and cutting edge. The best chefs can combine the two.
Because of this bit of background, I LOVED Sourdough. It played on that bit of food geek in my. I felt a kinship to Lois, thrown into a world she didn’t know existed and somehow succeeding and loving it!!!
But, more than that, I gained a deeper understanding of sourdough starters. They are the perfect vehicle for culinary geekiness! After reading Sourdough, I realize sourdough itself the perfect combination of food and science. Come on–microorganisms working to create the perfect dough, which gets baked into wonderful bread?
(Guess what — I just ordered a King Arthur sourdough starter!)
But there is a story in Robin Sloan’s Sourdough as well — and it’s wonderful. There’s a bit of romance, but mostly it’s about a young woman finding herself and learning about real passion. And discovering that doing something you love can provide a living, but you need to hang onto the part you love. If you lose the passion, you lose the magic.
Sourdough is intelligent and entertaining (similar to the bread)! AND it made me want to get in the kitchen and create something magical.
Robin Sloan gives readers the perfect follow up to Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. He gives us a great look at San Francisco foodie world, a protagonist working on finding herself, and a pretty much happy ending. The perfect read to put a smile on your face (and maybe on your bread!).