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I once missed a plane to see Aimee Bender.
How could I not? She’s a fantastic, wildly imaginative author. I’ve been a huge fan since her debut story collection The Girl in the Flammable Skirt was published in 1998. So when I was visiting Chicago, I immediately ditched my plans to fly home when I heard she was appearing at the Harold Washington Library. She was a great speaker: insightful and funny.
Treat Yourself to Her Newest Book
Released this past June, The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake is a melancholy coming-of-age story with a magical twist: protagonist Rose has the unique power to discover and feel people's emotions through food. Tasting her mother's homecooking brings to light revelations she'd rather not know.
This depiction of the "average family" is a subtle horror story; it is full of interesting interactions and has a mysterious ending, making it a good candidate for discussion (book club or otherwise). Bender writes beautifully, and anyone who knows LA will recognize its landscapes and landmarks.
Karen Choy, youth services librarian in Half Moon Bay, always saves her fork if there's dessert. Especially if it's peach pie.