“Julie & Julia” Author with Ties to Hudson Valley NY Dies at 49
During the time just after 9/11, September 2001, there was a woman who was trying to keep her life together and figure things out, while living and working in New York City. It was the blog that she wrote, talking about her everyday challenges, how she decided that cooking her way through a Julia Child cookbook, would somehow help her figure things out, that got the attention of the world.
The author was Julia Powell. Yes, she was from Texas, and moved to New York with her husband, first New York City, then upstate (Ulster County NY) to Olivebridge. Yes, there was a stop or two in between, she passed away this week at her home at the age of 49. It was reported by several news outlets, that it was cardiac arrest.
What was the book that she wrote that got the worlds, and Hollywood's attention?
The blog that she wrote, did become a book, a New York Times bestseller, Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously, in it, she delved into how her everyday life (and job and marriage) along with her challenges in her blog posts 9-11 New York City. The book got the attention of movie writer and director Nora Ephron.
Was the movie true to the book?
I read Ms. Powells first book before I saw the movie and would say that there is the version that she wrote and the version that Hollywood put up on the big screen. In my opinion, both the book and the movie are worth your time. Ms. Powell also wrote a second book, Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession, which came out, just around the same time the movie hit the big screen. In it, she documents her time at a then local Hudson Valley butcher, Fleisher's, where she learned how to butcher all sorts of meat.
I believe I had a conversation with her one day while she was working at the (now closed) Fleisher's Butcher in Rhinebeck. She was helpful, knowledgeable about the meat I was asking for, even making suggestions of a few items to get to complement them. It is sad to hear that any person passes at a young age. I hope her family can take comfort in the fact that she really did positively affect so many people through her writing. In her honor tonight, I will make sure to cook dinner for myself and some friends, and I will make them do the dishes.