Saving Ruth: A Novel

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Release Date: 10 March Harlequin: Fatal Affair Marie Force. Kugapai Cintamu Ashadi Siregar. English Indonesia. Gramedia Digital is a registered trademark of Gramedia Digital Nusantara. Add to Cart. Look Inside Reading Guide. Reading Guide. Apr 02, Minutes Buy. Apr 02, ISBN Apr 02, Minutes. Now, for the first time, she chronicles her groundbreaking tenure as editor in chief of Gourmet.

About This Item

Reichl is a warm, intimate writer. She peels back the curtain to a glamorous time of magazine-making. Yet Reichl had been reading Gourmet since she was eight; it had inspired her career. How could she say no? This is the story of a former Berkeley hippie entering the corporate world and worrying about losing her soul. It is the story of the moment restaurants became an important part of popular culture, a time when the rise of the farm-to-table movement changed, forever, the way we eat.

Thanks to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book for review. It's Ruth Reichl's Gourmet memoir! I've been so curious about her thoughts on Gourmet, what it was like to run the magazine, and what it was like when it closed. The book began with Ruth receiving an offer from Conde Nast. She takes quite a bit of time at the start of the book to show that working for Conde Nast was a totally different world to her and to most of us, I'd guess.

At the time, Reichl was working as restauarant criti Thanks to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book for review. At the time, Reichl was working as restauarant critic for the New York Times. While she loved the job and her co-workers, she was getting tired of eating out 14 times per week and rarely being able to eat with her family.

If you've read her other memoirs, you'll know that she is a cook at heart, and restaurant critics don't get to cook much. Conde Nast was a world where secret meetings were set because the magazine editors and owners feared that the press would get wind of the possible change in editors. It's a world of limousines and clothing allowances, all paid for by the magazine because style was at least as important as substance.

It was a world that was about selling a lifestyle at least as much as providing information. Reichl did not feel comfortable in this world and its unthinking privilege. She also didn't think she had the background to edit a magazine. But- she did have a connection to Gourmet. She had encountered the magazine first as a little girl and it had shown her the romance and culture that could go along with good food.


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However, by the time that she was tapped for heading up the magazine in the 90's, Gourmet was out of touch with the average cook. It was about high-priced restaurants, lofty aspirations, and complicated recipes that most home cooks would be intimidated to try. Reichl did turn the magazine around. I started subscribing to Gourmet in about I found the recipes to be surprisingly accessible and I can credit it for a lot of the education I got about new and interesting ingredients, cooking techniques that I could do and gave me confidence in the kitchen, and articles that made me think about where food comes from.

It was educational, it was fun, and I learned to cook from that magazine as much as from anywhere else. I remember the article on halal meat and slaughtering that Reichl references in the book, years after I read it first. I didn't even know what halal meat was, and the article was disturbing because of how personal it made the act of slaughtering an animal for meat. But the reverence given to the animal and to the meat that it provided made me think about how the act of slaughter could actually be spiritual instead of impersonal and automated- we have lost something there.

Why did I rate the book only a 3? Because I was confused by much of the book.

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Saving Ruth Book by Zoe Fishman

And what's the difference between a publisher and an editor at a magazine anyway? I never figured it out. There was discussion about ad revenue, but I never felt like I really understood how the magazine worked. Reichl made fun of herself for not being able to figure out magazine jargon what's a yaffy? Ruth Reichl is a very gracious writer- she gives credit to numerous people who changed the finances, advertising, photography and writing of the magazine, but she doesn't talk much about what she herself did.

I wanted to know more about what she herself did. And I was never quite sure about how to feel about the people she discussed. Some of them seemed unlikable but she apparently had affection for them. Si Newhouse, for example, the owner of Conde Nast when she worked there. The description of the interviews that she had with him and her subsequent work relationship- it felt very uncomfortable to me but she mentioned him in her dedication. And it was Si's decision to shutter Gourmet! Between November and December, without even putting out a last holiday issue I always looked forward to that issue and the cookie recipes.


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It was brutal, and I found it unforgivable as a reader- what must it have been like for the employees? Reichl foreshadows this event- we all know it's coming- but I felt like I wanted it explored more. It was hurtful to me because I had really grown to love that magazine- far more than Bon Appetit also by Conde Nast it spoke to me.

It seemed like it was all about the money at the end, no matter the dedication of the staff and the excellent product that they put out. There was a lovely chapter about Paris where Reichl found a dress that flattered and fit her like it was made for her. But I did not agree with the decision she made at the end of the chapter!!!! If you're getting a clothing allowance, get the killer dress. You've already got two homes and aren't Bohemian anymore- getting the dress isn't going to make you a sellout.

So, I felt that I didn't really understand what it was like to be at Gourment much better after reading the book, and that's where the 3 comes from.

Pages - Menu

Jan 26, Robin rated it really liked it Shelves: food-nonfiction , kindle-drc , april , memoir-autobio , pub. My love affair with Ruth Reichl's memoirs began with "Tender At the Bone" which chronicled her tumultuous childhood with her mentally ill mother. The second book that continued her career in the food world was "Comfort Me With Apples and for some reason, I found this book a little flat, but then she wrote "Garlic and Sapphires" and I was entranced.

Her stories about being a food critic for the NY Times and how she had to constantly disguise herself was fascinating, and even though I will most li My love affair with Ruth Reichl's memoirs began with "Tender At the Bone" which chronicled her tumultuous childhood with her mentally ill mother. Her stories about being a food critic for the NY Times and how she had to constantly disguise herself was fascinating, and even though I will most likely never get the chance to eat many of the foods she critiqued, the descriptions were out of this world.

Then I wasn't very impressed with "My Kitchen Year" about how cooking saved her life after she lost her job as Gourmet magazine's editor. So I was a little apprehensive about reading this next memoir but it turned out to an engaging look at her life as Gourmet magazine's editor. I adore books with details about the inner-workings of any kind of job and the processes and day-to-day details of how the magazine operated were riveting, although there were times Ruth was a little too detailed in her physical descriptions of her staff and bosses but I did find myself googling images to see what they really looked like and I got a little confused over who was who on the staff.

Ruth also interwove stories about her personal life both marriage and parents and hearing how her son evolved into a gourmet was heart-warming.

Review: Saving Ruth by Zoe Fishman

I think anyone who loved Gourmet magazine and is still grieving its demise or just want to find out the operations of a high-end magazine will find this as fascinating as I did. Thanks to the publisher Penguin Random House for the advance reading copy. Jul 15, Thomas rated it it was amazing. Just the right amount of gossip and good food.

Perfect vacation read. But then this one came out and I was offered a chance to review it so I jumped on the opportunity. Alright, guys. Torture, I tell you. So yes, please do eat something before diving into this memoir filled with exquisite descriptions of foods and tastes. But apparently it made its mark on Food History and it sought Ruth Reichl to be part of its gloriousness. Ruth talks about the magazine as much as she does about food and her own personal life or past experiences that helped her become who she is today.

I especially enjoyed reading about her son who experienced food differently than she did when she was a child. I was also very surprised by all the changes at Gourmet Ruth played a role in, like the rock and roll cover, something never done before, or the publishing of a controversial piece of writing. I do believe though that this book could have been even more interesting if there had been pictures included. Aug 13, Brandie rated it liked it Shelves: audio , summer-reading-guide , memoirs-nonfiction , read I loved some parts of this book and other parts were a little boring.

Overall I did enjoy it. May 09, Jeanette rated it it was ok. Ok, I tried this one to shake up the memoir reads. It started out fairly interesting within her leaving her food critic jobs for an unexpected Gourmet editor position. She seems to be perfect. Especially within her own evaluations. Or if not, very close. And her valued food world is at the same level. Ending abruptly like the magazine and 65 employees, all at once. This read was tedious to me. Others speak of humor? Ha, ha! Her world and juxtapositions just like the most tortured food of fusion b Ok, I tried this one to shake up the memoir reads.

Her world and juxtapositions just like the most tortured food of fusion bites. High ton and precious placements all around.

Ruth (The Book of Ruth)

Name dropping from both coasts essential. May 20, Janssen rated it really liked it Shelves: , audiobooks , memoirs , food. And listening to her read the audio? May 15, Kevidently rated it really liked it. Coming off my year of learning how to cook French food I did okay, sticking mainly to peasant stuff that's been elevated in recent years in the US , I was hungry for some more thoughtful discussion about food.

On a whim in the aughts, I picked up Reichl's memoir Tender at the Bone and fell in love with the words she used for cooking, eating, and savoring food. I was shocked at how forthright she was about the stuff I was ignorant about, especially stuff about butchering that I'd very carefully avoided thinking about in order to remain an omnivore. She made me think about it.

I'm still an omnivore. Ruth's following books narrowed in focus - Comfort Me with Apples was just as good, but more inward-looking, and Garlic and Sapphires was all about the lengths she went through to disguise herself when she was reviewing for the New York Times. Great writing and fascinating, but slightly less accessible. I can't remember if I read her memoir about her mother, but it seems I must have. Save Me the Plums seemed at first like it might be Reichl's least accessible book yet.


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It was all about her running Gourmet, a high-class magazine for gourmands. I knew it wasn't going to be pretentious or anything because that's not how Reichl operates, but I worried that I wouldn't be as interested on the day-to-day of running a fancy-food magazine aimed at people who were a lot richer than me. I bought it anyway because I liked Reichl's writing, and she was reading her own audiobook. It's pretty damn fabulous, and it reminded me of a few things: 1.

Most people, no matter how fancy they seem, are concerned about the same stuff. Is my kid eating right? Am I going to get this job I really want? What if I fuck up on the job? Is my new boss going to be a jerk? Am I being true to myself? Reichl tackles all these things and more, being up front about her anxieties and insecurities, but also about those moments when she took big risks to make her creative endeavor more exciting and relevant.

And 2. Why was I so concerned about accessibility? I've read Michael Crichton novels. I've read hard SF. Save Me the Plums absolutely is. And now I want those pancakes. May 18, Stewart Tame rated it really liked it Shelves: goodreads-giveaways-won. Full disclosure: I won a free copy of this book in a Goodreads giveaway. Ruth Reichl was, among myriad other accomplishments, the editor in chief of Gourmet magazine for ten years. Save Me the Plums is a memoir of her tenure there. Reichl writes vividly, and has a knack for an interesting anecdote.

Both books are about outsiders brought in to revamp stale New York City institutions, and both succeed in their revitalization efforts. Both books are rich in incident and detail, doing an outstanding job of transporting the reader to their respective eras. I notice that this isn't the only memoir that Reichl has written. Ruth Reichl is one of those famous people that I wish I knew in real life so we could just hang out. She seems no nice and fun and the way she writes about food makes me think maybe I could actually, willingly, eat pig brains or rabbits cooked in their own blood if only I was dining with Ruth.

This particular memoir is about her unexpected stint as editor in chief at Gourmet magazine and I liked it as much as her other books. View 1 comment. May 15, Cherie rated it really liked it Shelves: published-since , yearly-challenge , read-audio. What a great story!