From Publishers Weekly
Mehran’s second novel (after Pomegranate Soup) resumes the story of three Iranian sisters making their lives anew in smalltown Ireland. Beautiful and creative Marjan Aminpour cares for her younger sisters, Bahar and Layla; together the three run Babylon Cafe, and few locals can resist its charms or the amiability of its proprietresses. Although Marjan rules the roost, her sisters have secrets of their own, and their growing independence forces Marjan to allow them their freedom and confront her own needs—especially after she meets handsome Julian Winthrop Muir. As Marjan gives her sisters more space, the suspicious and xenophobic local busybody Dervla Quigley remains determined to uncover whatever foul play the foreign women have up their sleeves. And when Marjan’s friend Estelle reveals that she has rescued and helped a drowning girl, Marjan becomes involved in a secret that soon has Dervla plotting their downfall. Gourmands will savor the foodie passages (recipes, of course, are included), while the sisters’ exploits will win over readers into lighter fare about making a new home and growing up.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

What I thought:
The book was a disappointment for me. The cover was misleading; I found it among the food books at the Exclusive Books sale. I expected it to have food stories, but the food seemed forced into the story; which is chick-lit, my least favourite genre.
The characters didn’t come alive for me and many aspects did not become clear as I hadn’t read Pomegranate Soup. The sub-plot of the rescued girl is implausible and the book ends with it clear that the author intends a sequel.

Following the book review style of Leeswammes’ blog:
Rating: 2/5 stars
I got this book: from Exclusive Books
I read this in: English
Number of pages: 325
First published: 2008
Genre: Fiction



  1. Sorry that the book was a dissapointment, atleast you got it on a sale. Imagine had someone recommended it and you have to give them feedback, hehe! I am looking forward to purchasing the Maya Angelou cookbook, I heard she has a story about everydish. You should consider one yourself since you write so eloquent(ly).

  2. Thanks for the review. I’ll check out “Pomegranates” since I’m always looking for a god read. For a good food read, try “The Girl who Chased the Moon.” It has cakes recipes, which are part of the story.

  3. Too bad it was a disappointment, I thought the blending of Iran and Ireland would have been more exciting. The style of story reminds me of a book I really liked though : “Like Water for Chocolate” by Laura Esquivel. I love South-American writers and Mexican cooking just as much. Thanks for the review Cin, I do hope you are feeling much better.

  4. Yeah, but the book (s) sell at least somewhat. Better than I have been able to do (so far). You have to give them that. Doesn’t sound like my kind of book either, though, not even the recipe part. thanks for the review.

  5. Hurray, a book review! A pity the book wasn’t as good as you hoped. The cover looks very attractive for me and the story sounds fun, too. And chick-lit… I love that! 🙂

    But I think I would hope to read more about food than there seems to be. What a pity! I might still enjoy this, though.

  6. A pretty good review although I hate it when you didn’t enjoy a book. However, I think that if you didn’t enjoy it you should be able to say so instead of having to suck your thumb for something good to say and not mean it. It can be hard – as an author – to accept that not everyone will enjoy your writing (which, for me, is a rather personal thing) but the reality is different strokes for different folks. It is just the way it is. That way everyone has something to read and enjoy 🙂

    On the upside: at least you bought it on sale 😉

  7. Pingback: Book Review – Rosewater & Soda Bread – 2 1/2 stars | strivetoengage

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