Madame Proust and the Kosher Kitchen

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Marie Prevost is a contemporary Canadian who sets off for Paris to research Proust and escape a failed romance. Sarah Bensimon is a young Parisian Jew who marries into an orthodox family and takes refuge in her kitchen, recreating a kosher version of classic French cuisine. The third woman is madame Jeanne Proust herself, fragments of whose 'diaries' are recreated with impeccably researched detail - as she worries about Marcel, his late-night habits, his diet and his unsuitable friends. All these strands are brought poignantly together - the new world and the old, the Seine and the St Lawrence, mothers and sons, outsiders and insiders - in this intelligent and beautifully judged debut novel.