Saturday, October 10, 2009

Books and Food

We've been talking about reviews and reviewers over on the Type M 4 Murder ( blog, and the discussion made me think of a review I received several years ago for my first book, The Old Buzzard Had It Coming.

The review was from a web site called Book Concerns (, a post called “Key Ingredients” by Karyn from Montana, dated June 8, 2006. The post was about a Smithsonian Institution touring exhibit of the same name which was being hosted by several Montana museums. She mentioned an article in a Montana Committee for the Humanities publication in which the author speaks of the “parallel creative processes between cooking and other arts — especially writing.” Karyn went on to say that she has noticed the use of food in more books lately — including mysteries where the sleuth is a chef or a caterer. And now I quote: “…one book I just finished, The Old Buzzard Had It Coming by Donis Casey, has several yummy recipes at the end of the book as well as interesting scenes that have preparing food as a backdrop while farm wife Alafair Tucker attempts to learn who killed the much-hated Harley Day. Casey’s well-constructed mystery is a period piece set in 1912 Oklahoma, and warns at the beginning of the recipe section ‘These are not health foods’. And they sound delicious. The mystery was quite good, too.”

I especially enjoyed the last thought, Karyn, thank you. Cooking and food are important elements of my stories, but when I started my mystery series, I didn't realize how important they were to the readers.  An author friend and I once mused together over lunch that it's amazing how often readers love something about your writing that you never anticipated. For me, I was surprised and gratified at how readers have taken to the recipes and descriptions of the meals in my books. People love to read about food almost as much as they love to eat it.  Just ask any of the contributors to this blog. 

1 comment:

Dana Fredsti said...

One of my favorite things in ANY book is the descriptions of food and meals...