Your ability to change everything – including yourself – starts here
Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing.
But it’s the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute take a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans, the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with – of all things – her mind. True chemistry results.
Like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later, Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America’s most beloved cooking show, Supper at Six. Elizabeth’s unusual approach to cooking (‘combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride’) proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn’t just teaching women to cook. She’s daring them to change the status quo.
There has been so much hype around this book that I have been dying to read it for myself and I am so glad I finally did.
To start with I have to admit I wondered if it would be for me. Chemistry/science were subjects I neither understood or excelled at, at school and I wondered if it all might just go over my head. Whilst it is detrimental to the story, I actually found it all fascinating! I learned quite a lot when it came to the cooking shows about certain foods and how to cook them. Was definitely a much more fun way of learning.
Meeting Elizabeth and Calvin for the first time is certainly memorable. They are both quirky in character and I was a bit unsure to begin with but having finished the book, I have to say how much I adore both of them but especially Elizabeth. In fact there are quite a few characters that stole a piece of my heart. There were also some that I would have loved to have given a good slap. The book is set in the 1960’s a time where most women were housewives or working in roles that were deemed suitable for a woman. Poor Elizabeth has to face so much animosity for her life choices as well as being an incredibly intelligent scientist. It made me more appreciative to see how far we have come in our thinking.
Lessons in Chemistry was a pure delight to read! It covers love, grief, unlikely friendships as well as not giving up on yourself. Reading of Elizabeth fighting not just for her rights but for women in general was exhilarating and uplifting. It’s very much a story of not letting society dictate or dampen your spirits. If this doesn’t get snapped up for a movie deal, I’ll eat my own hat! A truly wonderful and mesmerizing novel.