At an intimate, festive dinner party in Seattle, six women gather to celebrate their friend Kate's recovery from cancer. Wineglass in hand, Kate strikes a bargain with them. To celebrate her new lease on life, she'll do the one thing that's always terrified her: white-water rafting. But if she goes, all of them will also do something they always swore they'd never do - and Kate is going to choose their adventures.
Shimmering with warmth, wit, and insight, Joy for Beginners is a celebration of life: unexpected, lyrical, and deeply satisfying.
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"A book designed to both fill you up and make you hungry for life." - Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review. Joyful, indeed. Highly recommended for those fascinated by fresh fiction." - Library Journal
"A soft-centered celebration of female friendship and endurance..." - Kirkus Reviews
"Moving, touching, wonderfully written, inspiring to read." - Garth Stein, author of The Art of Racing in the Rain
"How rare for a second novel to live up to the first. How transporting to live, even briefly, inside these women's lives." - Laura Hansen, Bookin' It
"A novel redolent with the perfumes, flavors and hues of its distinctively endearing cast of characters Joy for Beginners is ultimately a celebration of life; a literary confirmation of the power of friendship." - Carol Cassella, author of Oxygen
"This book is a joy to read." Stephanie Kallos, author of Broken for You
"A warm and elegant portrayal of what makes women, well, women: strength, healing, forgiveness, and ultimately, connection." - Jennie Shortridge, author of When She Flew
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Erica Bauermeister is the author of The School of Essential Ingredients (Jan 2009), a novel about eight students and their cooking teacher set in a restaurant kitchen. Her non-fiction work includes 500 Great Books by Women: A Reader's Guide and Let's Hear It For the Girls: 375 Great Books for Readers 2-14. She received a Ph.D. in literature from the University of Washington and has taught at both U.W. and Antioch. Her love of slow food and slow living was inspired during the two years she spent living with her husband and two children in northern Italy. She currently lives in Seattle with her family.
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