Lizzy & Jane  -     By: Katherine Reay
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Lizzy & Jane

Thomas Nelson / 2014 / Paperback

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Product Description

Lizzy was only a teenager when her mother died of cancer. Shortly after, Lizzy fled from her home, her family, and her cherished nickname. After working tirelessly to hone her gift of creating magic in the kitchen, Elizabeth has climbed the culinary ladder to become the head chef of her own New York restaurant, Feast. But as her magic begins to elude her, Paul, Feast's financial backer, brings in someone to share her responsibilities and her kitchen. So Elizabeth flees again.

In a desperate attempt to reconnect with her gift, Elizabeth returns home. But her plans are derailed when she learns that her estranged sister, Jane, is battling cancer. Elizabeth surprises everyone-including herself-when she decides to stay in Seattle and work to prepare healthy, sustaining meals for Jane as she undergoes chemotherapy. She also meets Nick and his winsome son, Matt, who, like Elizabeth, are trying to heal from the wounds of the past.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 336
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2014
Dimensions: 8.38 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 1401689736
ISBN-13: 9781401689735
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Lizzy and Jane couldn’t be further from Jane Austen’s famous sisters for whom they are named.

Elizabeth left her family’s home in Seattle fifteen years ago to pursue her lifelong dream—chefing her own restaurant in New York City. Jane stayed behind to raise a family. Estranged since their mother’s death many years ago, the circumstances of their lives are about to bring them together once again.

Known for her absolute command of her culinary domain, Elizabeth’s gifts in the kitchen have begun to elude her. And patrons and reviewers are noticing. In need of some rest and an opportunity to recover her passion for cooking, Elizabeth jumps at the excuse to rush to her sister’s bedside when Jane is diagnosed with cancer. After all, Elizabeth did the same for their mother. Perhaps this time, it will make a difference.

As Elizabeth pours her renewed energy into her sister’s care and into her burgeoning interest in Nick, Jane’s handsome coworker, her life begins to evolve from the singular pursuit of her own dream into the beautiful world of family, food, literature, and love that was shattered when she and Jane lost their mother. Will she stay and become Lizzy to her sister’s Jane—and Elizabeth to Nick’s Mr. Darcy—or will she return to the life she has worked so hard to create?

Author Bio

Katherine Reay has enjoyed a life-long affair with the works of Jane Austen and her contemporaries, and her favorite authors also include C. S. Lewis, Madeline L’Engle, Charles Dickens, J.R.R. Tolkien, John Piper, Timothy Keller, and the Bronte sisters. After earning degrees in history and marketing from Northwestern University, Katherine worked as a marketer for Proctor & Gamble and Sears before returning to school to earn her MTS. Katherine is an avid runner and a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. Her works have been published in Focus on the Family and the Upper Room. After living all over the world (including London), she currently lives with her husband and three children (with a great sense of permanency) in Seattle. Dear Mr. Knightley is her first novel.

Editorial Reviews

“Reay’s second Jane Austen-inspired tale is a layered and nuanced story of faith and hope, enriched by complex but relatable characters. Recommended for lovers of character-driven women’s fiction.”

Product Reviews

4.9 Stars Out Of 5
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Displaying items 1-5 of 11
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  1. Age: Under 18
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Amazing!
    March 17, 2015
    Rosie
    Age: Under 18
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Oh. My. Austen!

    This story is delightful and beautifully emotional. I immediately was drawn into the family conflict. Reay makes you care about her characters in a way that it sneaks up on you. It's not until it's time to set the book down that you realize how attached you have become. I didn't expect to enjoy the story as much as I did. I loved this book so much that I already dearly miss the characters.

    Though I would never admit to having favorites, I dearly like Lizzy's character. Oh, I was so happy to watch her grow and change over the course of the story. She's funny and caring, but deep down she's broken. This story is her journey to healing. It's a journey of forgiveness and of familial love. Her sister, Jane grew on me as well. Jane experiences her own growth in this story, but it's different from Lizzy's.

    And that's why, I think, I love this book so much. Like other books I've happened to read recently, this book is full of heart and soul. There's meaning in the pages. The characters are relatable. The story is heart-twisting. While yes, I can say there's "romance" in this story, it's far from the focus, which is so refreshing. It proves you don't need a central romance for a good story. All these things mentioned make up a wonderful book and this one is certain to remain on my shelf to be re-read. I highly recommend it.

    I bought this book, my opinions are my own.
  2. Texas
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A feast!!
    January 26, 2015
    Carole
    Texas
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I've read the reviews all ready shared, and I find I have nothing new to add because the territory that this is a wonderful book has been covered. I do agree with the reviewer who said there needs to be at least one recipe, and I add, more than one, included!
  3. Grand Prairie, TX
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A Beautiful Story
    January 20, 2015
    Britt98
    Grand Prairie, TX
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Lizzy & Jane is the first book that I have read by author Katherine Reay. I was pleased to discover how much I love her writing style. She has a wonderful ability to make the characters really come alive in the story. The sisters, Elizabeth and Jane, have built up a lot of resentment between each other over the years. The story of how they come together and learn how to let go of past hurts is at the center of what this book is about.

    I really liked Elizabeths (Lizzys) character. She is a chef and the author did such a beautiful job of convincing me that food preparation truly meant everything to Lizzy. The thought process that Lizzy uses to put together the dishes that she creates is central in this story and so interesting to read about. When she ends up traveling across the country to spend time with her ailing sister, it is not an easy decision. These two always end up at odds with each other. Their interaction throughout the book, and the way that sometimes one or the other would just lose it and say something incredibly insensitive, seemed very realistic.

    I liked Jane, too, even though she had some control issues in life. I felt sorry for all she was going through and felt that both she and Lizzy grew so much in this book. I simply loved the progression of this story. Every bit was worthwhile and added to the overall enjoyment for me.

    Nick was fabulous. He certainly handled many things with grace and frequently ended up being the support that Lizzy needed. He was kind and caring, and not pushy. But even he had some issues to work on in his personal life. There were things he hadnt allowed himself to really hand over to God. All of the main characters grew so much by the end of the book. This story is also packed with wonderful side characters that will pull at your heart. These characters, such as Cecilia, added so much to the book. I enjoyed this story from the beginning to the end. Plus, it has such a cute cover!

    I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through BookLook Bloggers, in exchange for an honest review.
  4. Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Flawed characters in need of healing
    January 18, 2015
    bookwomanjoan
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I really liked this novel. I really liked that Lizzy and Jane are flawed characters. They are real. I liked that Lizzy has to come to understand what her food preparation means to her and to others. I liked the aspect of the novel dealing with the conditions of chemotherapy, not only for the person receiving it, but those acting in support as well. I liked the references to novels, not only those of Austen, but also Hemingway. I liked all the descriptions of food made me hungry.

    This is a good novel all around. The characters are real and act like real people with issues. There are many themes dealt with in the novel. There is the family issue, Lizzy and Jane losing their mother when still young. There is the idea of supporting those going through chemotherapy and how one can be a help in the right way. The idea of food and tastes and creating food that would taste good to someone experiencing chemotherapy was very enlightening. There is a great deal of love, forgiveness and facing fears in the novel too.

    There would be much to discuss after reading this novel and a discussion guide has been included for reading groups. The only thing missing in this novel is the recipe for Nick's chicken rub. I mean, how can you have a book with food such an important part and not include even one recipe?

    I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.
  5. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    One of the Most Amazing Books I'll Read This Year
    January 7, 2015
    i blog 4 books
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Oh my! I'm not sure that I have adequate words to express how much I absolutely loved this book, but I'll give it a shot.

    At first glance, this is a simple romance novel featuring a chef who is struggling to rediscover her creativity in the kitchen and leaves town to help her sister as she battles cancer. Of course, she meets a cute guy, flirts a little, and starts to have more than friendship feelings.

    But Lizzy & Jane is about so much more than just romance or even self-discovery. It's about love and family and cancer and grief and loss and survival. It's about the intimate relationships between family members and how much it hurts to lose your mother and how even adults still need their moms and how important it is to stay close even when life pulls you apart. It's about sisters and caring for each other and sacrificing your dreams, wants, desires for another. It's about creativity and scenery and the mundane and the romantic moments in the midst of it all. It's about finding God in the middle of pain and tragedy and discovering hard truths about yourself along the way. It's about food and books. It's about more than just food and books though. It's about how those things tell others a lot about who we are and how they bring us together and help us build community with others. It's about serving and loving and giving. It's about the feast and how it can literally change our lives.

    The book was absolutely beautiful. The story itself was moving, and the writing was magnificent. I found myself staying up way too late to keep reading "just one more page." But getting only 5 hours of sleep was totally worth it. Totally.

    The relationships between every person in the book were just stunning. Jane and Peter. Jane and Lizzy. Lizzy and Nick. Lizzy and the kids. Lizzy and her father. Lizzy and Jane and their mother. All the patients in the cancer center. And Cecelia. Just dynamite! And the result of all of these relationships is a rich, deep, story that felt complete.

    I loved the talk between Lizzy and just about everyone about what books they liked, what foods they enjoyed, what smells, sights, and touches they loved most. It made me think about my own favorites and how all of those things work together to paint a picture of me.

    Some might think that there isn't a very strong faith message. And while it's true that there aren't a lot of direct conversations about the gospel, it's written all throughout the bookalmost allegorical.

    There are tons of references to Jane Austen, Hemingway, and other amazing works of literature. Sadly, I've read almost none of them (and have never really cared to), but reading Lizzy & Jane made me want to! (My TBR list has grown by leaps and bounds over the 355 pages of this book!)

    It's only day 6 of 2015, and I can already tell you with certainty that Lizzy and Jane will be on my "favorites" list this year. Seriously. Go find a copy of this book and read it! [5 stars]

    [One side note for the squeamish ... around page 175 there is a terrible accident involving a very sharp knife and Lizzy's fingers. The description is a little graphic, and I nearly got ill. But I'll just chalk it up to great writing (and a weak stomach!). If you ARE squeamish, just skip ahead a couple of pages, and you'll be fine. :)]

    I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my fair and honest review.
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