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The Little Library Cookbook

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Would you like to taste Paddington Bear’s marmalade? Or a clam chowder from Moby Dick? Drawing from her popular food blog, The Little Library Café, Kate Young has created more than 100 recipes inspired by beloved works of fiction—classics and contemporary bestsellers alike, including stories for all ages. The appealing cookbook offers delectable dishes to serve for breakfa Would you like to taste Paddington Bear’s marmalade? Or a clam chowder from Moby Dick? Drawing from her popular food blog, The Little Library Café, Kate Young has created more than 100 recipes inspired by beloved works of fiction—classics and contemporary bestsellers alike, including stories for all ages. The appealing cookbook offers delectable dishes to serve for breakfast, family dinners, holiday meals, midnight feasts, and parties and celebrations. You'll learn how to prepare the afternoon tea served at Manderley and decadent tarts the Queen of Hearts would love—all while reading food-related excerpts from your favorite books.


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Would you like to taste Paddington Bear’s marmalade? Or a clam chowder from Moby Dick? Drawing from her popular food blog, The Little Library Café, Kate Young has created more than 100 recipes inspired by beloved works of fiction—classics and contemporary bestsellers alike, including stories for all ages. The appealing cookbook offers delectable dishes to serve for breakfa Would you like to taste Paddington Bear’s marmalade? Or a clam chowder from Moby Dick? Drawing from her popular food blog, The Little Library Café, Kate Young has created more than 100 recipes inspired by beloved works of fiction—classics and contemporary bestsellers alike, including stories for all ages. The appealing cookbook offers delectable dishes to serve for breakfast, family dinners, holiday meals, midnight feasts, and parties and celebrations. You'll learn how to prepare the afternoon tea served at Manderley and decadent tarts the Queen of Hearts would love—all while reading food-related excerpts from your favorite books.

30 review for The Little Library Cookbook

  1. 5 out of 5

    Daisy May Johnson

    I've been waiting for this book for a while, ever since I came across Kate Young's work online and, in particular, the moment where she made breakfast rolls as inspired by The School at the Chalet by Elinor M. Brent-Dyer. What more perfect an aim could one wish for then a cookbook inspired by literary foods? And this, this is perfect. It is a very particular sort of perfect, one crafted by brown-butter madeleines and porridge and Rebecca and The Bear Nobody Wanted, shifting from 'before noon', t I've been waiting for this book for a while, ever since I came across Kate Young's work online and, in particular, the moment where she made breakfast rolls as inspired by The School at the Chalet by Elinor M. Brent-Dyer. What more perfect an aim could one wish for then a cookbook inspired by literary foods? And this, this is perfect. It is a very particular sort of perfect, one crafted by brown-butter madeleines and porridge and Rebecca and The Bear Nobody Wanted, shifting from 'before noon', to 'around noon', to 'after noon', 'the dinner table', 'midnight feasts', 'parties and celebrations' and 'christmas', and stopping off at My Life in France and My Naughty Little Sister on the way. The Little Library Cookbook is a delicious and intoxicating mixture of memory and recipe, where writing nestles up against recipe (which is, to be frank, a form as elegant as any poetry you'd dare to mention), and Bad Harry sits on one page whilst on another, Young's writing makes me want to try porridge. Porridge. I can't stand porridge, but this book makes me want to stand it, makes me want to try it through writing as delicious as this: "Pour the oats and water into a saucepan and leave to soak while you have a shower or check your emails or snooze against the doorframe - 1o minutes will do." Food, books, and snoozing. I am sold. I even want a spurtle. I'm not one for cookbooks, not normally. I find them a little removed and unachieavable. Aspirational, yes, and inspiring, sometimes, but somehow never quite doable. But oh, I love The Little Library Cookbook because it's a tribute to language and fiction and food, all at the same time, and fiction sustains us, in its way, as much as a fried egg on toast does. This is cookery for readers and Young doesn't leave you behind. Her recipes are friendly and kind and honest; swap this for that, if you don't have this, here's a substitute, and her book choices are delightful. I love work like this, and I love it when it feels like you've known a book for a long time even though you've just met. The Little Library Cookbook feels like family. It feels like home.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Carole

    There is a bit more reading in this than in your average cookbook, and that is what makes it so delightful. Each recipe is a recreation based on a dish in one of the author's favourite books, and is accompanied by a quote from the book in question and the memories it evokes in the author (family events, fond childhood memories, a feeling, connections to a place or time in her life). Some of the recipes are quite involved (I'm not sure if I'll be making many of those), but alternatives and short There is a bit more reading in this than in your average cookbook, and that is what makes it so delightful. Each recipe is a recreation based on a dish in one of the author's favourite books, and is accompanied by a quote from the book in question and the memories it evokes in the author (family events, fond childhood memories, a feeling, connections to a place or time in her life). Some of the recipes are quite involved (I'm not sure if I'll be making many of those), but alternatives and short cuts are sometimes offered and I liked the practical way the recipes are written. What really sets this apart though, is the connection to literature. The author's passion for both food and books really shines through. It truly is comfort food AND comfort reading, two things that go together so very well.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Robin Stevens

    I love cooking and I love books, so this is basically my ideal cookbook. Delightfully written, beautifully photographed and ENTIRELY relevant to my interests (Kate's childhood reading and my own were extremely similar), this really is a wonderful addition to anyone's shelf that will have you smiling with delight as you cook. 12+ *Please note: this review is meant as a recommendation only. Please do not use it in any marketing material, online or in print, without asking permission from me first. I love cooking and I love books, so this is basically my ideal cookbook. Delightfully written, beautifully photographed and ENTIRELY relevant to my interests (Kate's childhood reading and my own were extremely similar), this really is a wonderful addition to anyone's shelf that will have you smiling with delight as you cook. 12+ *Please note: this review is meant as a recommendation only. Please do not use it in any marketing material, online or in print, without asking permission from me first. Thank you!*

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lauren James

    A cookbook where each recipe is paired with a novel - usually something the characters eat in the book! This is very quintessentially British, and I keep going back to it when I'm trying to choose what to cook. It's a very comforting read. A cookbook where each recipe is paired with a novel - usually something the characters eat in the book! This is very quintessentially British, and I keep going back to it when I'm trying to choose what to cook. It's a very comforting read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Marina

    This collection of literary-themed recipes is the kind of cookbook you could happily read in bed. Each recipe has a quote from a book mentioning the food, and then a page of musings from the author: her relationship with the book, her ‘parent-heavy’ Australian childhood, her time sleeping in a kitchen (that’s London rents for you!) Some of the foods chosen were (not unpleasantly) predictable, such as Paddington’s marmalade and Christmas fare from Dickens. Others were from books I’ve never heard o This collection of literary-themed recipes is the kind of cookbook you could happily read in bed. Each recipe has a quote from a book mentioning the food, and then a page of musings from the author: her relationship with the book, her ‘parent-heavy’ Australian childhood, her time sleeping in a kitchen (that’s London rents for you!) Some of the foods chosen were (not unpleasantly) predictable, such as Paddington’s marmalade and Christmas fare from Dickens. Others were from books I’ve never heard of, such as ‘Two Weeks with the Queen.’ I liked the clean layout and the understated photos. My only disappointment was that there were a few recipes without pictures – after reading a description of tarts ‘filled with sweet, vanilla-scented custard, and topped with all the red berries you can find’ I excitedly looked for a picture – but there was none. I read this book on my Kindle but I think it a paper version would make a lovely gift.

  6. 4 out of 5

    LillyBooks

    Honestly, there wasn't a single recipe in here I'm going to try and make (but would be handy if I were having a theme party), but that's not why I checked this book out anyway. I liked the way the author quoted the exact line(s) about the food from the novel in question, and I enjoyed her little introduction to each recipe in which she discussed how that book or the food in the book or both intersected with her life in some way. The photos of the food were excellent, too, but not enough of them. Honestly, there wasn't a single recipe in here I'm going to try and make (but would be handy if I were having a theme party), but that's not why I checked this book out anyway. I liked the way the author quoted the exact line(s) about the food from the novel in question, and I enjoyed her little introduction to each recipe in which she discussed how that book or the food in the book or both intersected with her life in some way. The photos of the food were excellent, too, but not enough of them.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance

    Review coming on my blog this week.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stacey

    I just happened to pick up this book during my latest trip to the library. The idea is very quaint - to offer real recipes for food that has been mentioned in 100 different books. For example, the recipe included for The Godfather is spaghetti with meatballs and the recipe for The Great Gatsby is the classic Mint Julep. The author also provides a summary of why the book and the recipe resonated with her. It was really interesting to read and a book that I would love to spend more time exploring.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Chris From RecipesNow!

    Growing up an avid reader, author Kate Young became fascinated with the food being eaten by the characters within her favorite novels. As someone who also enjoys creating food in the kitchen, she has managed to pair her two loves to create The Little Library Cookbook. In her introduction, the author describes the recipes themselves, the ingredients and equipment required (including an essential equipment list), and the books from when she received her inspiration. In the On Reading section of her Growing up an avid reader, author Kate Young became fascinated with the food being eaten by the characters within her favorite novels. As someone who also enjoys creating food in the kitchen, she has managed to pair her two loves to create The Little Library Cookbook. In her introduction, the author describes the recipes themselves, the ingredients and equipment required (including an essential equipment list), and the books from when she received her inspiration. In the On Reading section of her introduction, the author is quite poetic about her love of reading and books. Anyone reading this section will immediately want to reach for a favorite book. The recipes themselves are broken up into unusual categories: Before Noon Around Noon After Noon (Tea) The Dinner Table Midnight Feasts Parties & Celebrations Christmas Each of the recipe categories begins with an explanation about the category. A quote from the book which inspired the recipe starts you off. Following this is a description from the author describing the recipe and/or her relationship to it. Each of the recipes includes serving size, and equipment required. Many also offer substitutions or tips. About half of the recipes included photographs, some include step-by-step instructional pictures as well. A recipe index comes after all the recipes, followed by an author index so you can look up the recipes based on your favorite writers as well. New And Unique Yet Familiar While all of the books, or the majority of them, will be familiar to most of the readers, the recipes are a more modern take on the familiar story. They are updated for use in a modern kitchen, yet still managed to evoke the feel of the book. This is a wonderful book for any book fan who enjoys cooking. A terrific gift for any foodie who enjoys reading. See the full review and the recipe for Sausage Rolls at The RecipesNow! Reviews And Recipes Magazine. This review is written in response to a complimentary hard copy of the book provided by the publisher in hopes of an honest review.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Catherine Dix

    I was lucky enough to attend an author event with Kate Young, where she discussed the inspiration behind her recipes, all drawn fro her favourite books, and served us tantalising treats. We ate spice cookies from We Have Always Lived in the Castle, sausgae rolls from Harry Potter, and drank wonderfully decadent chocolatl from Northern Lights. If you have an interest in food, books, or both, then get yourself a copy of the book. It is full of accessible, achievable recipes, it is beautifully pres I was lucky enough to attend an author event with Kate Young, where she discussed the inspiration behind her recipes, all drawn fro her favourite books, and served us tantalising treats. We ate spice cookies from We Have Always Lived in the Castle, sausgae rolls from Harry Potter, and drank wonderfully decadent chocolatl from Northern Lights. If you have an interest in food, books, or both, then get yourself a copy of the book. It is full of accessible, achievable recipes, it is beautifully presented with fab photographs, and it details the authors's journey through her favourite novels providing inspiration for your next read.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ben Nielsen

    My friend gifted me this book, which came in the post one day this week, along with two Bundt tins I’d bought. More and more I want to read about food just as much as I want to eat it. I think Kate’s cookbook is also a beautiful tome just to browse through; it has the loveliest reflections on literature and life and cooking.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Taylor

    Perfection. Mix a love of literature with a love of food and you get this book. Wonderful, heartwarming stories that connect each literary reference to the writer's life and memories and provide an inspired recipe for each. Perfection. Mix a love of literature with a love of food and you get this book. Wonderful, heartwarming stories that connect each literary reference to the writer's life and memories and provide an inspired recipe for each.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Arnz Mcleod

    Absolutely love this book - it’s like my ultimate comfort blanket 💕

  14. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    I'm in no way culinarily inclined - read purely for the personal anecdotes and literary references (which were excellent)! I'm in no way culinarily inclined - read purely for the personal anecdotes and literary references (which were excellent)!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    I loved the idea of this cookbook yet I came out with more ideas for books to add to my ‘to-read’ list than actual recipes I want to make.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Claudia Fernández

    This book is my ideal book. I love when books have food in them, I always highlight the chapters where food is described fully and my mouth waters just by reading the words. This book turns those descriptions into realities, things you can actually eat. But it doesn't just do that, it does it accompanied by the most charming stories from Kate Young's life and the most beautiful pictures. Honestly, I wish I could live in this book. I have not done every recipe on the book yet (nor will I ever beca This book is my ideal book. I love when books have food in them, I always highlight the chapters where food is described fully and my mouth waters just by reading the words. This book turns those descriptions into realities, things you can actually eat. But it doesn't just do that, it does it accompanied by the most charming stories from Kate Young's life and the most beautiful pictures. Honestly, I wish I could live in this book. I have not done every recipe on the book yet (nor will I ever because some of them contain meat and fish and I do not eat either of those things) but I already know I'm going to love every single one of them I make.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Noble

    This book was a delight to read - I love that the author is Australian, but lives in London. Many of the books I hadn't heard of, so I learned about those. And the ones I did know, it was fun to read about the recipes. Many of the recipes I hadn't heard of - and while I'm not a cook, I do like to read about books and food - two of my favorite subjects! Beautiful photographs too. And I like that there's a ribbon to hold my place. A quality book all around. This book was a delight to read - I love that the author is Australian, but lives in London. Many of the books I hadn't heard of, so I learned about those. And the ones I did know, it was fun to read about the recipes. Many of the recipes I hadn't heard of - and while I'm not a cook, I do like to read about books and food - two of my favorite subjects! Beautiful photographs too. And I like that there's a ribbon to hold my place. A quality book all around.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lucie

    Charming.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Definitely a few from here I will try!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jo

    I loved this book! It makes me want to be a better person.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Reannon Bowen

    Kate’s writing is a delight to read. Her enthusiasm for food & reading is a joy. Her books are now some of my favourite. And she has inspired me to re-read some of my favourite stories.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Deb

    My two passions, books and food together in one book.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    I love a cookbook you can read, one where the story of each recipe is as important as the recipe itself. This book goes one further - you get a recipe, a story, and a book recommendation. It’s honestly the most perfect book concept ever! Each recipe gets a lovely introduction, with a little about the book and what it means to the author and also how it inspired the food. Some are obvious (the giant chocolate cake was a must for Matilda and turkish delight from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrob I love a cookbook you can read, one where the story of each recipe is as important as the recipe itself. This book goes one further - you get a recipe, a story, and a book recommendation. It’s honestly the most perfect book concept ever! Each recipe gets a lovely introduction, with a little about the book and what it means to the author and also how it inspired the food. Some are obvious (the giant chocolate cake was a must for Matilda and turkish delight from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe was essential), and others are a little more round about. I loved the women's meal inspired by A Room of One's Own and the treacle tart with rosemary ice cream inspired by Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is equal parts delicious and inspired. There was a particular thrill when I came across any of my own favourites - iced coffee and meringues inspired by A Room with a View or a vanilla layer cake from Anne of Green Gables, and Hush's feast inspired by one of my all-time favourite childhood books Possum Magic. My only difficulties with this delightful cookbook is deciding whether to eat or read first...

  24. 5 out of 5

    Brenna

    I adored this book, it melds my two favorite subjects together - books & food. Pretty much every recipe in the book I have never tried or was not even familiar with since they are more European than American, and I cannot wait to try some out. The physical book itself is beautiful with lovely photos and descriptions of the author’s childhood and what each dish means to her. I also loved the attached ribbon bookmark. After realizing that the author and I are similar in age, I think it is extraord I adored this book, it melds my two favorite subjects together - books & food. Pretty much every recipe in the book I have never tried or was not even familiar with since they are more European than American, and I cannot wait to try some out. The physical book itself is beautiful with lovely photos and descriptions of the author’s childhood and what each dish means to her. I also loved the attached ribbon bookmark. After realizing that the author and I are similar in age, I think it is extraordinary what she has already accomplished, not just publishing a great book but making the leap to do so in the first place. What a delight to experience!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Tera

    Yes, it took me awhile to actually get around to reading this book. But when I did, I went through it pretty quick. I was fascinated by the plethora of recipes/meals mentioned in children and adult literature. The quotes from the books have also inspired me to want to read some of the books mentioned and possibly try the recipes. I also liked the back story of the author's personal journey of living in Australia and moving to London. Yes, it took me awhile to actually get around to reading this book. But when I did, I went through it pretty quick. I was fascinated by the plethora of recipes/meals mentioned in children and adult literature. The quotes from the books have also inspired me to want to read some of the books mentioned and possibly try the recipes. I also liked the back story of the author's personal journey of living in Australia and moving to London.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin

    While I love looking through cookbooks, I very rarely actually sit down and read them. But this one I read from front to back! I loved Kate Young's descriptions of the books, and of how she first discovered them and the meals contained inside. I've made a few recipes so far and they've both been delicious as well! Highly Recommend. While I love looking through cookbooks, I very rarely actually sit down and read them. But this one I read from front to back! I loved Kate Young's descriptions of the books, and of how she first discovered them and the meals contained inside. I've made a few recipes so far and they've both been delicious as well! Highly Recommend.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Cat

    Lots of great recipes, from wonderful literature, that I am sure book lovers everywhere will want to make and eat while reading their favorite book. Fruity Nutbread sounds wonderful for anytime of day with a hot cup of tea! It's a must have book to add to my collection of literary themed cookbooks! Lots of great recipes, from wonderful literature, that I am sure book lovers everywhere will want to make and eat while reading their favorite book. Fruity Nutbread sounds wonderful for anytime of day with a hot cup of tea! It's a must have book to add to my collection of literary themed cookbooks!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    Gift from Sian. Read it through in one course - this is the perfect combination: recipes taken from fiction - each recipe has an introduction and Young's voice is enthusiastic and fun. I want to cook all the things in it - NOW! Gift from Sian. Read it through in one course - this is the perfect combination: recipes taken from fiction - each recipe has an introduction and Young's voice is enthusiastic and fun. I want to cook all the things in it - NOW!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jack Bates

    Literary recipes It seems wrong to review a cookbook before you’ve made any of the recipes but this is also a great read and very entertaining. It reminded me once again that I still haven’t read The Great Gatsby. Also that I really should try making Turkish delight.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Bethwyn Badger

    just wonderful. review to come!

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