Past Meetup

The Lost Art of Mixing by Erica Bauermeister

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In the relative hush of the predinner rush, Lillian quietly assesses her surroundings. She needs to prepare for the evening’s specials, and she needs to take inventory for the week’s orders. Ever since she opened her own restaurant, her brain seems to be constantly buzzing, always planning for the busy hours ahead. Even the most careful preparations, however, couldn’t have allowed Lillian to anticipate the twist her life is about to take. Using Lillian’s restaurant as the hub for a cast of widely varied characters, Bauermeister explores the intersections of community, food, belonging, and memory. With Isabelle, the elderly matriarch whose faculties are rapidly fading; Chloe, the feisty sous-chef who’s positive she’ll never be able to trust a man; and other friends and acquaintances, an interconnected and heartfelt story unwinds. In her third novel, Bauermeister displays her admirable talent for ensemble fiction, allowing various characters to share narration duties. Fans of Deborah Copaken Kogan and Meg Waite Clayton will enjoy the nove