Tomorrow There Will be Apricots, Jessica Soffer
2013, Brilliance Corporation
This book was so beautiful that I wept openly when I finished it—my husband thought I was crazy. I immediately went online and Googled Soffer and tried to find out as much as I could about her.
The first thing that struck me is that she’s incredibly young.
While her writing is fresh and “young-sounding,” if that even means anything, I was convinced she was older—how else than with a lot of life experience is an author going to capture love, relationships, friendship and everything else so beautifully?
I don’t say this a lot, but this book was perfect—simple yet complex, beautiful, touching, sad, and uplifting. The language is deliciously lyrical while at the same time there was nothing superfluous: everything fits into a beautiful little package. And of course it’s also about food.
Through the story of Lorca, an attention-starved teen with a selfish, self-absorbed chef mother who plans to pack her off to boarding school; and Victoria, a recently widowed former restaurateur who emigrated from Iraq for—what else?—love, Soffer weaves a touching and exquisite story of self acceptance, friendship, and what it means to be family.
The descriptions of food and cooking are vivid and are entwined with the story in a way that few novels about food achieve. There are tons of books about cooking, eating, and food, but generally, the connection between food and the story itself is tenuous at best, forced and heavy-handed at worst.
Few manage the right balance and make food—or a food—a real character in the book the way Like Water For Chocolate does. Until this book. Definitely one of my favorite food- related books, if not just one of my favorite books in general. It’s that good.
Did I already say I LOVE this novel? And it’s only Soffer’s first; I can’t wait to read whatever she comes out with next!