Mood: don't ask
I finally finished reading Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession by Julie Powell (Julie and Julia).
This is Powell's second memoir, following Julie and Julia, a book I also read and loved (the movie is wonderful, too).
I was so excited to finally get this book and crack it open, so I honestly have no clue why it took me damn near a month to finish. I'm blaming a crap load of freelance work and perhaps a social life? Who knows.
But this really was a great book.
While Julie and Julia portrayed Powell as a tender, sweet chef on the road to stardom and success, Cleaving reveals a darker side: one that includes butcher knives, cow's blood, and hot sex.
Powell makes public her affair with a man she calls "D" and she does so in a way that I admire greatly. It's tough to put your sex life out there in a manner that's truthful, yet not slutty, and she does it well. Bravo!
What I love most about this story is its honesty. I think a lot of women, while maybe not in an affair form, have dated a man like "D"—sexy, addictive, and douchey. We've all been there, and we've all fought to the death to get rid of him.
Most of the book, though, is Powell's journey as an apprentice at a small butcher shop. While I'm not one for blood and guts, I loved it. The dynamic between what she learns and the bonds between the guys at the butcher shop are things only some writers can capture; and she does so well.
The way the butcher terms and the descriptions of the affair fit together is twisted, sick, and quite amazing, too.
Powell's husband is a great person, and I was really happy the way the book ended. I hope Powell keeps writing, as I love her work. Cooking and writing...it doesn't get any better.
2012 reading goal: 6/29