A life-affirming memoir about survival, renewal, and finding a community.
Before The Lost Kitchen became a world dining destination, Erin French was a girl roaming barefoot on a 25-acre farm, a teenager falling in love with food while working the line at her dad’s diner and a young woman finding her calling as a chef at her restaurant tucked into a 19th century mill. This singular memoir—a classic American story—invites readers to Erin’s corner of Maine to share the real person behind the “girl from Freedom” fairytale, and the struggles that have taken all of her strength to overcome, and that make Erin’s life triumphant.
Erin opens up to the challenges, stumbles, and victories that have led her to the exact place she was ever meant to be, telling stories of multiple rock-bottoms, of darkness and anxiety, of survival as a jobless single mother, of pills that promised release but delivered addiction, of a man who seemed to offer salvation but in the end ripped away her very sense of self. And of the beautiful son who was her guiding light as she slowly rebuilt her personal and culinary life around the solace she found in food–as a source of comfort, a sense of place, as a way of bringing goodness into the world.
“Erin’s story is full of passion and courage, and when you read this book, you will walk away feeling inspired and encouraged in your own life.”