As an autobiography Bella My Life In Food is a most unexpected lay out for a book. It begins with a chapter called “Growing Up,” and describes Annabel’s Langbein’s family life when she was a young child. Towards the end of the chapter are photos of her family and herself as a little one. This keeps the faces and people fresh in the reader’s mind. Following that are several delicious recipes. This pattern continues through the book and is an interesting way to break up the story.
Living in New Zealand with her family Annabel was a clever, thoughtful girl, whose great love of nature and food was evident from an early age. As a toddler she baked endless mud cakes, and later, when taken to dinner by her parents, would quiz the waiter on how the food was prepared. As a teenager she was strong minded and rebellious, living as a hippy for some time; living off the land. As she grew, and developed her direction for the future, she realised that travelling to other countries would broaden her horizons.
Eventually she wrote a letter to Julia Childs asking for her advice for future occupations. Julia wrote back and suggested that she attend a conference in USA, which cemented the fact that ‘Bella wanted to cook. Annabel has lived a rich and busy life, including further travel as well as studying horticulture, then meeting the love of her life and having children. The publication of her cooking books has proved an enormous success. Her recipes are simple but mouth-watering and inviting.
Her passion for life, family, cooking, and nature, shines through this book. Bella My Life In Food is a celebration of one woman’s dream and her tireless efforts to bring the dream to reality. This is a fantastic cooking book, autobiography, and human story.
|Publisher||A&U New Zealand|
|Distributor||Allen & Unwin|