My Thoughts/Summary/Review: This is the story of three women in a small town who have been friends since grade school. This book spans 23 years of their lives (1941-1964), with memories of earlier years included. Set during World War II, themes of war, sex, relationships, loss of innocence, grief, depression, hope, and love are woven together seamlessly...and realistically. Babe, Grace, and Millie and watch as the boys they love go off to fight a war that nobody understands. Only Babe has a man return to her. A changed man. A man she loves, but no longer knows. War raped her of her innocence and stripped Claude of his. Which is harder: losing the husband (and father your child never even knew) you planned to grow old with...or having him return a stranger? Next to Love explores the evolving relationships of these women as they deal with life in their own ways. Babe speaks her mind. Grace gets lost in grief. Millie moves on and closes the book on the past. These different women and their entwined lives run the gamut of friendship: jealousy, resentment, joy, sharing, supporting...accepting.
While not a foodie book, there are some foodie moments. Claude urges Babe to "get a hobby" other than him. She picks up the Le Cordon Bleu Cookbook and sets to it (with mention of one of my all-time favorite things... Béarnaise). Grace makes peach pies and hosts cookouts. Cocktails are abundant. Young Amy is enamored by her first Shirley Temple when at a restaurant with Grace and Morris.
"If there were no war?" he repeats. "Imagine."
my version...probably pretty close to the original, but not entirely sure...this is the way I've always made one. Kids LOOOOVE getting this drink, especially in a tall glass along side the adults cocktails.
Fill a glass ¾ full with ice. Squeeze about a quarter of an orange over the ice. Pour in a good slug of grenadine (or some juice from a jar of maraschino cherries, if you don't have any grenadine). Throw a few maraschino cherries in the glass. Top off with Lemon-Lime soda. Garnish with an orange slice.
*I received a free copy of this book to review from the publisher. All thoughts and opinions stated in this post are 100% mine.follow the tour: