Talking Cookbooks with Mahri Kerley

Hello Everyone!

I was passing by our local indie bookstore, and to my surprise The Gourmet Girls Go Camping Cookbook was on display up front and center along with Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbook. How cool is that!

Being a “book sherpa” for many years, I’ve always supported the idea that independent bookstores bring a lot to a community, including a forum for the latest literary releases, a place where authors can share their work and meet their fans, and a place to browse without feeling pressured to buy. Chaucer’s, established in 1974, is such a place, and we owe it all to Mahri Kerley, its founder and owner.

After having seen our cookbook on display next to Paltrow’s book, I went back to photograph it and then popped into the back room where Mahri has her office. I knew she was a cookbook enthusiast (dare I say fanatic!), and I wanted her to say a few words about her personal collection … she has hundreds and hundreds. Having been to her eclectic and lovely home, I’ve been witness to the cookbooks piled high all around the kitchen area. Mind boggling to say the least! On top of that, she’s a fantastic cook and hostess.

Mahri always says that no matter what the price of a cookbook is, it’s worth buying (of course, that’s evident from her collection). If you make only one recipe from the book, she says, you’ve probably spent more on ingredients than the price of the book itself. Makes sense to me.

I know for sure that Mahri’s not a camper. When we first offered her a look at The Gourmet Girls Go Camping Cookbook, she said, “I look forward to perusing it (not that I EVER camp).” Nevertheless, the Gourmet Girls plan to make her a gourmet campfire meal, even if it’s in her own backyard!

Cheers (and don’t forget to support your local indie bookstore)!

Gail, Denise and Lindsey

The Gourmet Girls on Fire!