Thursday, March 26, 2009

Deep Dish by Mary Kay Andrews

In Deep Dish, Mary Kay Andrews tells the story of two Southern cooks in an all-out war to win a spot in the Cooking Channel's lineup. I jumped at the chance to read the book because I desperately needed a light read, and I love cooking and numerous Food Network shows.

Andrews' characters are both funny and complex. Gina Foxton has a show on Georgia public television, Fresh Start With Regina Foxton, and if she doesn't get the Cooking Channel show, she's out of a job. Her loser of a boyfriend and producer, Scott, slept with the wife of the show's sponsor, who learned of the tryst and pulled the sponsorship. Meanwhile, Tate Moody has a successful hunting, fishing, and cooking show on the Southern Outdoors Network, Vittles, and his overbearing producer, Val, wants to take his success up a notch.

When Gina meets Tate's dog, Moonpie, and accidentally lets him lose on the Vittles set, it's obvious the two will be rivals. Their animosity prompts the Cooking Channel to create a reality show, Food Fight, that takes them to Eutaw Island for a three-day competition. The winner will get their own show on the network. The plot is pretty predictable, but it's a funny, romantic story that kept my interest until the very last page. I love Southern fiction, and Andrews has a great sense of humor.

While Scott and Val were annoying, I couldn't get enough of D'John, Gina's gay makeup and hair stylist, and Lisa, Gina's tough younger sister who is pretty wise despite her wild antics. Gina and Lisa's mom also is a riot. She leaves phone messages for the girls that start out with, "This is Mrs. Birdelle Foxton calling," and I was delighted to finally "meet" her in the last scene. In addition to the entertaining cast of characters, Andrews does a great job describing the cooking show segments, from the planning of the recipes to last-minute replacements and doctoring for the cameras. And though the book definitely is light reading, it does make you think about finding your true self and figuring out what you want in life. I really enjoyed Deep Dish and would recommend it for readers who like some laughs, fun characters, a hilarious plot, and much talk about food and television.

Mary Kay Andrews was a guest on Book Club Girl's radio show last night. You can check it out here if you missed it.

Deep Dish also was reviewed by:

Savvy Verse & Wit
Peeking Between the Pages
Booking Mama
Redlady's Reading Room

If you've also reviewed it, let me know in the comments, and I'll add your link!

Disclosure:  I received a free copy of Deep Dish from HarperCollins for review purposes.


Serena said...

I'm glad you liked this book as much as I did. I'm letting my mom borrow this one and I recommended it to Janel. She loves cooking and reading...I thought it was a good fit for her.

Serena said...

btw, D'John rocked!

Anonymous said...

lol! do you and serena even follow the same reading/reviewing schedule?:) I just read her review of this book on my reader and scrolled down to see your review of the same book! i need to get my hands on this one after two great reviews!!

Gwendolyn B. said...

I really enjoyed this book, too. I was surprised by its length, but it was a fast and fun read. I hear Andrew's HISSY FIT is really good, too!

Julie P. said...

D'John was a great character! You're so right!

Serena said...

I think Hissy Fit will be next on my list of reads, Gwendolyn!

bermudaonion said...

This one looks good. I think I've read all of the books she wrote under her real name - I'm not sure if I've read any Mary Kay Andrews though.

Unknown said...

Yet another book that I need to add to my shelves! Culinary fiction is so fun.

Sandy Nawrot said...

I know I would love this...I am just about as passionate about cooking as I am about reading! Put the two together, and watch out!

S. Krishna said...

I enjoyed this book but thought it was a bit long for the subject matter.

Ladytink_534 said...

My mom bought and read this when it came out, then she lent it to me and though I've read and loved all of Mary Kay Andrews' books (and a few of her books under her real name too), it took me until a few days ago to actually read it! I enjoyed it SO much though!

D'John and Moonpie were awesome!

Anna said...

Serena: I hope your mom stops by your blog to review it!

Ramya: Not all the time LOL. We enjoy reading the same book, though, because it makes for more entertaining lunch discussions.

Gwendolyn: I was surprised, too, when I saw how long it was. But you're right, it went by fast.

Julie: I'll be checking out your review soon. I can't wait to hear what you thought of it.

Serena: I'm looking at Hissy Fit right now on your coffee table, and I'm wondering if you're going to finish it before it's due back at the library. LOL

Bermudaonion: I had no idea she wrote books under another name and that Mary Kay Andrews isn't her real name. Interesting.

Janel: I know you'd love this one!

Sandy: I feel the same. I tend to love fiction that involves cooking.

S. Krishna: I agree that it could have been shorter, but I enjoyed it anyway.

Ladytink: I'll have to read one of her other books some time. I've been hearing good things about them.

Serena said...

I haven't even started it yet! I dunno if mom will review it.

Anna said...

Serena: I figured. I was just getting on your case. Well, you better tell your mom we all wanna know what she thinks.