Friendship Bread by Darien Gee
Published: January 2011
An anonymous gift sends a woman on a journey she never could have anticipated.
One afternoon, Julia Evarts and her five-year-old daughter, Gracie, arrive home to find an unexpected gift on the front porch: a homemade loaf of Amish Friendship Bread and a simple note: “I hope you enjoy it.” Also included are a bag of starter, instructions on how to make the bread herself, and a request to share it with others.
Still reeling from a personal tragedy that left her estranged from the sister who was once her best friend, Julia remains at a loss as to how to move on with her life. She’d just as soon toss the anonymous gift, but to make Gracie happy, she agrees to bake the bread.
When Julia meets two newcomers to the small town of Avalon, Illinois, she sparks a connection by offering them her extra bread starter. Widow Madeline Davis is laboring to keep her tea salon afloat while Hannah Wang de Brisay, a famed concert cellist, is at a crossroads, her career and marriage having come to an abrupt end. In the warm kitchen of Madeline’s tea salon, the three women forge a friendship that will change their lives forever.
In no time, everyone in Avalon is baking Amish Friendship Bread. But even as the town unites for a benevolent cause and Julia becomes ever closer to her new friends, she realizes the profound necessity of confronting the painful past she shares with her sister.
About life and loss, friendship and community, food and family, “Friendship Bread” tells the uplifting story of what endures when even the unthinkable happens.(
I cannot believe it took me so long to pick up this amazing book. I am not sure what held me back because once I did start reading I was just blown away by what a charming story it was. I felt like I was a welcomed neighbor, peeking in on the lives of the people in the small town of Avalon.
It is so nice to read a book where people make good choices. I was really happy Mark didn’t go the way I though he was heading. The only character that I didn’t like was Eddie, but by the end of the book even she grew on me. Everyone else became so dear and their stories felt so touching and real. I completely loved the ending and how things came together.
This wonderful book makes me want to do two things: re-read it so I can make sure I didn’t miss anything the first time and learn to bake bread! I am looking forward to reading more books by this very talented author.