A Recipe for Love: A Lesbian Culinary Romance
Blurb: Piermont, New York. Danika Russo is 55, newly retired from a 30-year career as a mail carrier, and stuck in a rut. After putting her own needs on hold to care for her terminally ill partner and her unloving father, Danika is holed up the childhood home she inherited, a claustrophobic time warp from the 1970s complete with brown Formica and linoleum, and not sure what to do next.
Her best friend Natalie suggests making a list of things she has always wanted to do. Stepping outside her comfort zone, self-deprecating Danika opts for taking an Italian cooking class, not knowing that she will both impress the appreciative chef with her tasting skills and meet a mysterious younger woman there, Finn Gerard, who will capture her heart and teach her the recipe for love. But Finn is withholding a grim secret and, despite her initial passion, appears unable to commit to Danika fully. Will Danika allow herself to let go and fall in love for the first time in her life, even if there are no guarantees? Even if she must learn to let go?
This complex lesbian romance touches on themes of rediscovery and transformation, showing that while love can be the answer, real healing always starts from within.
Lucy Madison’s latest will appeal to fans of fine, well-crafted lesbian fiction and authors like Caren Werlinger. Readers will enjoy a bonus cookbook section at the back, featuring all the recipes mentioned in the book!
Danika had waited long enough. She peeked into the oven at the cheesy soufflé and knew by looking at its height that it was perfectly cooked. She removed the round, white porcelain ramekin from the oven, gently placing the perfectly risen, browned soufflé on the worn kitchen counter. This soufflé had been a staple for her over the years, but the excitement of an impeccably risen soufflé never got old. Danika thought about grabbing her cell phone to take a photo before the soufflé fell, but she decided to pick up her fork instead.
After a few sublime mouthfuls of the cheesy, airy, eggy goodness, she rested her elbows on the kitchen counter and looked around. Birds chirped outside. Early summer sunlight streamed through the kitchen windows, a blessing after the brutal New England winter, even though the sunlight highlighted the dust on every surface. Now what? she thought to herself. Danika had nothing to do. Her first official day of retirement arrived on this first Monday in May. She had worked one job or another since she was sixteen years old. Thirty-nine years later, at the ripe old age of fifty-five, she had nowhere to be and no idea what to do with the rest of the day, let alone the rest of her life. It wasn’t unsettling, it was downright terrifying.
Danika always expected to be settled by the time she retired. She’d imagined having a partner with whom to cook, talk about books and movies, visit art galleries, and travel. She envisaged being partnered. Prepared. Somehow, the opposite had proven to be true. Danika never thought that receiving an A.A.R.P. card would cause near-physical discomfort. She was alone, living in her parents’ old house in Nyack, New York, ill-prepared for retired life.
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**Available on October 10th! Click HERE to grab the book when it’s available!
About the author: Lucy J. Madison is a novelist, poet, screenwriter, and ghostwriter. Her short stories, articles, and poems have appeared in dozens of literary magazines and publications nationwide. She resides in shoreline Connecticut and Provincetown, MA. www.lucyjmadison.com
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