My Life in France

by Julia Child, Alex Prud’Homme

ISBN-10: 1400043468
ISBN-13: 9781400043460
Region: USA
Publisher: Knopf
Publication Date: April, 2006
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Publishers Information

About My Life in France

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Julia Child singlehandedly created a new approach to American cuisine with her cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking and her television show The French Chef, but as she reveals in this bestselling memoir, she was not always a master chef.

Indeed, when she first arrived in France in 1948 with her husband, Paul, who was to work for the USIS, she spoke no French and knew nothing about the country itself. But as she dove into French culture, buying food at local markets and taking classes at the Cordon Bleu, her life changed forever with her newfound passion for cooking and teaching. Julia’s unforgettable story – struggles with the head of the Cordon Bleu, rejections from publishers to whom she sent her now-famous cookbook, a wonderful, nearly fifty-year long marriage that took them across the globe – unfolds with the spirit so key to her success as a chef and a writer, brilliantly capturing one of the most endearing American personalities of the last fifty years.

Author Information

About Julia Child

Julia Child was an American chef, author and television personality, who introduced French cuisine and cooking techniques to the American mainstream, through her many cookbooks and television programs.

Julia Child grew up in California but spent most of her adult life in Cambridge Massachusetts until 2001 when she retired back to California donating her famous kitchen to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC, where it is now on display.

Julia’s culinary endeavor’s began in 1949 when she and husband Paul Child moved to Paris. Julia repeatedly recalled her first meal in Rouen of oysters, sole meunière and fine wine as a culinary revelation. She described the experience once in The New York Times as “an opening up of the soul and spirit for me”. While in Paris, she attended Le Cordon Bleu and thus the career of a Legend was launched.

Although she has numerous books and television series to her credit, her most famous works are the 1961 cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking and the television series The French Chef, which premiered in 1963 as an instant national hit and ran for ten years winning many Peabody and Emmy Awards. In the decades that followed Julia hosted many other television series including Julia & Company, Cooking with Master Chefs, Dinner at Julia’s, Julia Child and Jacques Pepin Cooking at Home and many more.

Among her many accolades Julia received the French Legion of Honor in 2000 and the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2003. Julia also received an honorary doctorate from Harvard University and even graced the cover of Time Magazine.

On August 13, 2004 Julia Child passed away at the age of 91. Julia Child changed the way America eats, instilling passion into the food culture of the United States and much of the world.

This August, a film adaptation, titled Julie & Julia, also based on Julia Child’s biography, My Life in France, sees 2009 Academy Award nominee Amy Adams cast in the role of Julie Powell. (

Cookbooks by Julia Child

About Alex Prud’Homme

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Alex Prud’homme was born and raised in New York City.  In 1984 he graduated from Middlebury College, in Vermont, with a BA in history.  In 1985, he embarked on a three month trip to Asia that turned into a two year adventure around the world.  Working as a fisherman in Australia, an English teacher in Japan, and a janitor in Paris, Prud’homme filled 13 journals with observations.  It was this daily recording of experience that led him to a career in writing.

In 1988, he began his career as a fact-checker at New York magazine, where he wrote many short articles; he also wrote freelance, producing stories like “Slave,” a New Yorker piece about an irascible soup maven (later made famous by Seinfeld’s “Soup Nazi”).  He moved to BusinessMonth, where he profiled business leaders, to Time, where he covered national affairs, and to People, where he wrote on crime.  For several years he was a ghost writer of business books and freelanced for publications like The New York Times.

In 2001 Prud’homme joined Tina Brown’s Talk magazine.  His story “Should Johnny Paul Penry Die?” — about the debate over executing mentally-retarded criminals — was anthologized in The Best American Crime Writing.  In 2002 his story, “Investigating ImClone” was published in Vanity Fair and anthologized in Best Business Crime Writing.

In 2003, Prud’homme and Michael Cherkasky (CEO of Marsh & McLennan) wrote Forewarned, about terrorism and security, for Ballantine.  In 2004, Prud’homme wrote The Cell Game, an investigation of the ImClone scandal, for HarperBusiness.  This book has been optioned for a movie.

On April 4, 2006, Knopf will publish My Life in France, which Prud’homme wrote with Julia Child.  It is Julia’s reminiscence about the years she and her husband Paul (Prud’homme’s great uncle) lived in Paris, Marseille and Provence.  First printing will be 100,000 copies; an audiobook and a Vintage paperback are forthcoming; first serial has gone to The New York Times Magazine (2/19/06) and Bon Appetit (April 2006);  it is a main selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club; Prud’homme will appear on “Good Morning America,” and will do a six city book tour.

Alex Prud’homme lives with his family in Brooklyn, NY.

Cookbooks by Alex Prud’Homme

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