Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Review: Bon Appetit by Sandra Byrd

My reviews on Sandra Byrd's "French Twist" trilogy continue! Here's my take on Bon Appetit, the second book in the French Twist series.

Lexi Stuart has just arrived in France to take advantage of an incredible opportunity to live and study baking in the country of her dreams. She's enrolled in a 4 month program at a French baking school, completely paid for by her employer. In addition she'll also be working at two of the local village bakeries to earn her keep and to further her knowledge of all things French, food, and baking related.

Left behind in Seattle are Lexi's family, friends, and possible boyfriend Dan...although it was too early to tell, Lexi still wonders what might have been. But to actually be living in France, learning and baking scrumptious breads, cakes, and treats...it's a dream come true that she wouldn't trade for anything! After a couple weeks the realization sets in of just how alone she is, truly without friends in a foreign land. In a country of extremely private people where it's taboo to talk of faith and beliefs, Lexi once again starts to nourish her budding relationship with God that she had slowing been building back in Seattle.  

I was pleasantly surprised to find this story quite a bit more enjoyable than the first book in the series. Lexi has "grown up" some since the first book, and she is more likeable because of it. The setting of France is very unique, and the French customs and culture make the story quite different (in a good way!) from the average chick-lit novel. 

Going to a foreign country to study baking (or anything, really) is something I cannot even begin to picture myself doing. I especially can't imagine doing so completely on my own, leaving everyone I know behind....Yet that's exactly what Lexi did. The fact that I can't ever see myself doing something like this actually added to my enjoyment and appreciation of the story. I doubt I'll ever do something so drastic, but thanks to Lexi (or should I say, thanks to the author!) I got a taste of what it would be like, without ever having to leave my home-state! 

I really enjoyed reading about something so totally different from my everyday life, yet it wasn't historical or fantasy... the setting of France makes it realistic--just very far removed from my own reality. I really enjoyed it. Bon Appetit was a unique and enjoyable read, and I'm looking forward to seeing what turns Lexi's life takes in the third book, Piece de Resistance.

My rating: 4.5 stars 

If you have a kindle you can download the first chapter of Bon Appetit for free at Amazon.
Please rank my review! You'll be entered to win a free copy of this book (courtesy of Waterbrook/Multunomah and their Blogging For Books program)!

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