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How to Bake a Perfect Life
by Barbara O'Neal


Overview - In a novel as warm and embracing as a family kitchen, Barbara O Neal explores the poignant, sometimes complex relationships between mothers and daughters and the healing magic of homemade bread.
Professional baker Ramona Gallagher is a master of an art that has sustained her through the most turbulent times, including a baby at fifteen and an endless family feud.
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More About How to Bake a Perfect Life by Barbara O'Neal
 
 
 
Overview
In a novel as warm and embracing as a family kitchen, Barbara O Neal explores the poignant, sometimes complex relationships between mothers and daughters and the healing magic of homemade bread.
Professional baker Ramona Gallagher is a master of an art that has sustained her through the most turbulent times, including a baby at fifteen and an endless family feud. But now Ramona s bakery threatens to crumble around her. Literally. She s one water-heater disaster away from losing her grandmother s rambling Victorian and everything she s worked so hard to build.
When Ramona s soldier son-in-law is wounded in Afghanistan, her daughter, Sophia, races overseas to be at his side, leaving Ramona as the only suitable guardian for Sophia s thirteen-year-old stepdaughter, Katie. Heartbroken, Katie feels that she s being dumped again this time on the doorstep of a woman out of practice with mothering.
Ramona relies upon a special set of tools patience, persistence, and the reliability of a good recipe when rebellious Katie arrives. And as she relives her own history of difficult choices, Ramona shares her love of baking with the troubled girl. Slowly, Katie begins to find self-acceptance and a place to call home. And when a man from her past returns to offer a second chance at love, Ramona discovers that even the best recipe tastes better when you add time, care, and a few secret ingredients of your own."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780553386776
  • ISBN-10: 0553386778
  • Publisher: Bantam
  • Publish Date: December 2010
  • Page Count: 398


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Romance - Contemporary
Books > Fiction > Contemporary Women

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2010-10-25
  • Reviewer: Staff

The Rita Award–winning author (as Barbara Samuel) of The Lost Recipe for Happiness returns with the absorbing story of Ramona Gallagher, a 40-year-old woman whose joy in running a bakery in Colorado Springs helps her transcend a life that's anything but perfect. Ramona has a prickly relationship with her large, restaurant-owning family and a deep love for her daughter, Sofia, who Ramona had as a teenager and is now grown and pregnant. When Sofia's husband is injured in Afghanistan and she flies to Germany to be with him, Ramona is left to care for Sofia's 13-year-old stepdaughter, Katie, a scrawny child whose drug-addicted mother is in jail. Over the summer, Ramona struggles to keep her business afloat and find some solid footing with her family, bonds with Katie, aches for what her daughter is enduring, and rekindles a romance from 25 years earlier. O'Neal's tale of strong-willed women and torn family loyalties is a cut above the standard women's fiction fare, held together by lovingly sketched characters and real emotion. (Dec.)

 
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