Saturday, June 1, 2013

I'm Your Huckleberry - A Review of Geoducks Are for Lovers by Daisy Prescott

Geoducks Are For Lovers

Goodreads Blurb
Food writer Maggie Marrion is just getting back on her feet after a horrible year, or two, or three. With their twentieth reunion approaching, she invites four of her closest friends from college for a weekend at her beach cabin on Whidbey Island. What she doesn’t expect is her best friends, artist Quinn Dayton and part-time erotica novelist, Selah Elmore, to play matchmaker. The two plot a surprise that will make the weekend, and her life, a lot more interesting.

Gil Morrow, a former grunge musician turned history professor, joins them as Selah’s date for the weekend. Facing his own ghosts, Gil decides he’s waited long enough to get the girl. With the support of college sweethearts, a hot lumberjack, a few wishing rocks, and the world’s largest burrowing clam, Gil reminds Maggie that forty-something isn’t too old for second chances.

Can we learn to love the life we have and let go of who we expected to be? What happens when the generation from The Breakfast Club and Reality Bites meets The Big Chill? Come spend a weekend with these Generation X-ers as they share laughter, tears, life’s ups and downs, old stories, and new beginnings.
This book was such a refreshing change from the books I've been reading lately.  Maggie Marrion is a 40-something year old woman living on her own after divorce, the death of her father, and the illness and then 2 years ago, the death of her mother.

Living on the island in the house that has been passed down through her family, Maggie is finally starting to feel accepted and at peace with her life.  She has established a routine and she and her dog, Biscuit have made a few friends in the area.

She invites her college friends to come to the island for a long weekend visit.  When she discovers that her friend Selah is bringing a date, Gil Morrow, Maggie determines to make things as un-awkward as possible.

Gil Morrow, history professor, former grunge rocker, and once Maggie's best friend, is the one that got away.  Or rather, the one Maggie ran from.  After secretly hooking up with Gil in college, Maggie went to France and there met her would be ex-husband.  Things never were the same for Maggie and Gil, but now they are both here.  And unattached.  

I very much enjoyed reading a grown-up romance.  Maggie and Gil did have some awkwardness and communication problems, but they are also adult enough to not let these things get in the way of what could be a very good thing.  

I love Maggie's relationship with her college friends.  Their closeness is to be envied.  I absolutely had a blast reading this book and recommend it to anyone who enjoys books by Jill Shalvis and Kristan Higgins as it falls into their styles.

4 out of 5 stars

I'm trying something different for this post.  The lead in this story is a food blogger and at one point was asked by her friends to make Huckleberry syrup. I decided it would be fun to make some Huckleberry syrup myself in honor of Maggie and her friends.  Here is the recipe I used:

Ingredients: (8 servings)
    2 C huckleberries (if frozen, thaw in the saucepan before adding remaining ingredients)
    1 C water
    1/2 C sugar
    1 Tbsp cornstarch (or 2-3 Tbsp flour)
    1 Tbsp cold water
    juice of one lemon
    zest of one lemon (optional)

This is a completely basic recipe, which makes it equally as good on pancakes as over cheesecake.

1. Combine huckleberries, water, and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat.
2. While berries are warming, in a small bowl, mix cornstarch and cold water. Add to saucepan.
3. Add lemon juice (and zest) to saucepan.
4. Bring sauce to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Cook another 5 minutes.
5. Remove from heat and allow to thicken for 10+ minutes.

It was delicious and recommended by my 11 year old.  He kept going back for "just another taste".  He almost didn't leave enough for the pancakes.

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