Books about Food

Lauri Sturdivant

My brother and I liked to challenge each other to read books before we could watch the movie. The movies are rarely as good as my images of the characters and setting, but it is something I still do. I just recognize that they are different art forms and I don't need to compared them to each other. The list below includes some books that were made into movies and some are just for fun reading. I've included a Roald Dahl that I recommend as stories for both adults and children.  

If You Give a Mouse, a Cookie is the first in a serieswritten by Laura Joffe Numeroff with illustrations by Felicia Bond. These books have been turned into an animated series. This is a good introduction for young children to see books transformed into movies.  

Roald Dahl is known for his surreal and imaginative stories of children include James and Charlie. Both stories are books and movies. James and the Giant Peach is a magical tale of James, a young orphan boy who moves into a peach then has a surreal cross-world adventure where he meets seven magically-altered garden bugs. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a book and several movies about a young boy who wins the golden ticket and takes a tour of the candy factory along with several other children. There are several YouTube videos that narrate these books.  

Eat Pray Love is Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir about a 30-year-old women's mid-life crisis where she gets a divorce, quits her job, gets rid of her belongings and sets out on a yearlong journey to Italy, India and Bali.  This story is available in print, audio and a movie starring Julia Roberts.

Chocolat is the first in a trilogy written by Joanne Harris. This is the story of a single mother's move to a small town in France. The tale is filled with a mix of hedonism, magic, and chocolate. Chocolat was made into a movie with Oscar nominee Juliette Binoche, Johnny Depp and Judy Dench.

Both Joanne Fluke and Diane Mott Davidson are writers in subgenre of cozy mysteries. The stories where murders often treated humorously and detection take place in small communities. Fluke's character is bakery owner Hanna Swensen. Most recipes are for sweet treats and cookies. Ms. Davidson released her first novel in 1990 Catering to Nobody where sheintroduces her character Goldy Schulz of Goldie's Catering. These books include recipes for the food and dessert.

Janet Evanovich doesn't write about cooking, but there is plenty of food involved in the zany antics of characters, bounty hunter Stephanie Plum and side kick Lula. Stephanie's mother, Mrs. Plum, a Trenton, New Jersey house wife, cooks plenty of pot roasts Sunday supper meals that always include dessert. The first book, One for the Money was made into a movie. Janet publishes a book a year with the latest book, Twisted Twenty-Six released in 2019.   

Susan Wittig Albert has twenty books with titles like Thyme of Death and Mistletoe Man, telling the tales of China Bayles an expert herbalist and shop owner in the fictional town of Pecan Springs, Texas. These stories are full of herbal lore and a little magic. Books include recipes for teas and food.

Ms. Albert's has several non-fiction books including, China Bayles' Book of Days: 365 Celebrations of the Mystery, Myth, and Magic of Herbs from the World of Pecan Springs includes recipes for tea, foods, oils and gardening tips.