Book Inspired Food · Book Review

Book Inspired Recipe and Book Review: Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain

Thank you so much to Judy from The Book Club Cookbook for letting me be apart of this food and fiction party!

This was such a great read and I was so intrigued by this book. I was excited when to make a recipe that would both tie into this story and that I thought I could enjoy. When I was reading Big Lies in a Small Town, I noticed that because Anna is always busy she likes to eat quick and easy meals and mentions that she eats frequently at a restaurant/diner called Nothing Fancy. So, I decided to make something that has that southern comfort and homestyle feel. I made Apple Fritter Bread. It is one of my favorites and so easy to make.

You can find ingredients and recipe below:

Ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup of brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 apples. peeled and diced
  • 2/3 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup of butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of milk
Recipe:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9×5 inch loaf pan with pan spray. Set aside
  2. In a small bowl, combine 1 tsp of cinnamon and 1/3 cup of brown sugar
  3. In a medium sized bowl, combine the diced apples with the remaining 1 tsp of cinnamon and stir until coated evenly. Set asie.
  4. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and granulated sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and beat into the mixture. Add vanilla extract and mix with a spoon or baking spatula.
  5. In another bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda. Then, add 1/2 cup of milk and mix until smooth.

6. Pour half of the batter into the loaf pan. Then layer half of the apple mixture on top followed by half of the brown sugar mixture. Make sure that the layer is even by pressing the apples and cinnamon into the batter.

7. Repeat step 6 for the next and final layer.

8. Bake for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

9.Take out of the oven and let cool for 15 minutes. Enjoy!

My Review:

Big Lies in a Small Town is a wonderful and captivating historical fiction. Diane Chamberlain gives readers two strong-willed female characters and crafted their stories to not only make sense but flow in a dual timeline. It’s set in North Carolina during the 1939-1940 and 2018. The story is rich in art and paints a vivid picture with her words.

As the story begins, we meet Anna Dale(1940) and Morgan Christopher(2018). Anna is an aspiring artist who makes her dreams a reality when she wins a national contest to paint a mural for a post office in Edenton, NC. She thinks its going to be both exciting and challenging, but what she didn’t expect was to feel guilty for being a talented woman. She is faced with misogny that really takes her aback. She isn’t one to give up easily and works her hardest to make her art matter. But lies, secrets, and even violence play a huge part in her life and add to the mystery of who and what happened to Anna Dale.

The story switches timelines and we meet Morgan Christopher. She is living in 2018 times and is facing prison for a crime she didn’t commit. She gets an unusual proposition to restore a work of art and she will be released immediately. She jumps at the chance even though she isn’t experienced at restoration. She too works in North Carolina and learns more about herself, her love of art, and secrets.

I don’t want to give too much away because the story does keep you on your toes about how the story is connected.

Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

I give Big Lies in a Small Town 5 stars. Diane Chamberlain made me enjoy art through her words. She gives readers a beautiful yet mysterious story in which two characters come together in such a unique way. This is an enjoyable read. It is close to 400 pages but I read it in one sitting because I couldn’t put it down without knowing how it would end.

2 thoughts on “Book Inspired Recipe and Book Review: Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain

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