Authors: Stacey Ballis
Tags: #Humour, #chick lit
Out to Lunch
“A sparkling, heartwarming novel with all the elements of a can’t-put-it-down read—a heroine you’ll root for, unexpected plot twists, and dangerously good descriptions of food!”
—Sarah Pekkanen, author of
The Best of Us
“A funny and heartfelt tale of friendship, food, and how difficult it can be to open yourself up to love . . . This is Stacey Ballis at her witty and chef-tastic best.”
—Amy Hatvany, author of
Safe with Me
Heart Like Mine
“Ballis delves again into foodie women’s lit with flavorful results . . . Honest and touching.”
Off the Menu
“Readers hungry for cleverly written contemporary romances will definitely want to order
Off the Menu
“Another fabulous and soul-satisfying meal . . . With the perfect blend of humor and heart, Ballis’s writing is powerfully honest and genuinely hilarious.”
New York Times
bestselling author of
The Tao of Martha
“Enticing. Ballis writes a bit like Emily Giffin and Isabel Wolff, and the recipes will please gal foodies as well.”
“Smart, sexy, and delightfully buoyant . . . In a word, scrumptious.”
—Quinn Cummings, author of
The Year of Learning Dangerously
“Interesting characters and a satisfying plot . . . Fans of Stacey Ballis will devour her latest book.”
“A great contemporary romance about a chef striving to find balance in her life and enjoying both her man and her career.”
Parkersburg News and Sentinel
Good Enough to Eat
Good Enough to Eat
is like a perfect dish of macaroni and cheese—rich, warm, nuanced, and delicious. And like any great comfort food, Stacey Ballis’s new book is absolutely satisfying.”
“Witty and tender, brash and seriously clever . . . Her storytelling will have you alternately turning pages and calling your friends urging them to come along for the ride. And in Stacey Ballis’s talented hands, oh what a wonderful ride it is.”
New York Times
bestselling author of
What Happened to My Sister
“A toothsome meal of moments, gorgeously written, in warmth and with keen observation,
Good Enough to Eat
is about so much more than the magic of food; it’s about the magic of life. Pardon the cliché, but you’ll devour it and wish there was more to savor.”
—Stephanie Klein, author of
Straight Up and Dirty
The Spinster Sisters
“Readers will be rooting for Ballis’s smart, snappy heroines.”
“A laugh-out-loud hoot of a book. Jodi and Jill are amazing characters. They are challenged by balancing their business lives with style, charm, and grace. A must-read.”
A Romance Review
“Filled with characters so witty and diverse yet so strong in their passion for friends and family that they could easily be our best friend or favorite aunt . . . Women of every age will relate to Ballis’s clever yet unassuming story about sisterhood, dating dramas, and the bonds of friendship and family.”
RT Book Reviews
Room for Improvement
“For those who say ‘chick lit’ is played out, all I can say is think again. Stacey Ballis proves the genre can be funny, honest, clever, real, and, most importantly, totally fresh.”
“More fun than a
marathon. One of the season’s best.”
The Washington Post Book World
“Rife with humor—always earthy, often bawdy, unwaveringly forthright humor.”
“A laugh-out-loud novel that will appeal to HGTV devotees as well as those who like their chick lit on the sexy side. One of the summer’s hot reads for the beach.”
“In her third outing, Ballis offers up a frothy, fun send-up of reality TV. Readers will have a blast.”
“Ballis presents a refreshingly realistic approach to relationships and the things that test (and often break) them.”
“Fans of relationship dramas will appreciate this fine, character-driven tale.”
The Best Reviews
will have you laughing, crying, and planning your next girls’ night out.”
Romance Reader at Heart
“This engaging story delivers everything you ask from a great read: It makes you laugh, it makes you cry, it makes you
One of Chatelaine.com’s Seven Sizzling Summer Reads for 2004
“An insightful and hilarious journey into the life and mind of Chicagoan Sidney Stein.”
Today’s Chicago Woman
“Ballis’s debut is a witty tale of a thirtysomething who unexpectedly has to start the search for love all over again.”
“Stacey Ballis’s debut novel is a funny, smart book about love, heartbreak, and all the experiences in between.”
“Without compromising the intelligence of her readers, Ballis delivers an inspiring message of female empowerment and body image acceptance in her fun, sexy debut novel.”
Inside Lincoln Park
Berkley Books by Stacey Ballis
ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT
THE SPINSTER SISTERS
GOOD ENOUGH TO EAT
OFF THE MENU
OUT TO LUNCH
RECIPE FOR DISASTER
THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) LLC
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014
USA • Canada • UK • Ireland • Australia • New Zealand • India • South Africa • China
A Penguin Random House Company
This book is an original publication of The Berkley Publishing Group.
Copyright © 2015 by Stacey Ballis.
Penguin supports copyright. Copyright fuels creativity, encourages diverse voices, promotes free speech, and creates a vibrant culture. Thank you for buying an authorized edition of this book and for complying with copyright laws by not reproducing, scanning, or distributing any part of it in any form without permission. You are supporting writers and allowing Penguin to continue to publish books for every reader.
BERKLEY® is a registered trademark of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
The “B” design is a trademark of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
eBook ISBN: 978-1-101-61258-3
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Recipe for disaster / Stacey Ballis.—Berkley trade paperback edition.
ISBN 978-0-425-26550-5 (paperback)
Berkley trade paperback edition / March 2015
Cover design by Rita Frangie.
Cover photo composition by S. Miroque.
“Woman cooking pizza at home” by Hasloo Group Production Studio / Shutterstock;
“Schnauzer” by ARTSILENSE / Shutterstock.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
PUBLISHER’S NOTE: The recipes contained in this book are to be followed exactly as written. The publisher is not responsible for your specific health or allergy needs that may require medical supervision. The publisher is not responsible for any adverse reactions to the recipes contained in this book.
Because my house wasn’t complete till you moved into it, and now wherever you are is home to me.
This book is dedicated with much love and gratitude to the people who have most informed my sense of home. My dad, Stephen, who taught me that it is always okay to over-improve a property if it comes from a place of love and passion. My mom, Elizabeth, who has devoted her entire professional life to finding people their homes, and her personal life to making a loving and happy home for our family. My grandmother Jonnie, for teaching me that the kitchen is the heart of a home, that it is always preferable to be fearless there, and if the fudge doesn’t set, call it fudge sauce and buy ice cream. My sister, Deborah, who keeps any home she is in full of laughter.
For Lew Coulson, who trusted us to take care of our house with the same loving commitment that he did, and made one of my biggest lifelong dreams possible.
For Bill and Colette Rodon-Hornof, who listened to twenty years’ worth of ideas for our dream home, and heard what we needed, and designed something that exceeds every one of those dreams.
For Patrick King and Dennis Leary, for working so hard to make it all come to life, and for being excellent recipe tasters.
For Penny, who suffers endless hours of discussion of all the minutiae that goes into the design of every space. Whatever style and beauty our house contains always has her magical input and impeccable taste.
For Amy and Wayne, and Lisa, who are so generous with their own homes and make us feel like family when we are with them.
For Leslie Gelbman, Wendy McCurdy, Katherine Pelz, Caitlin Valenziano, Craig Burke, Brian Wilson, and everyone else on the Berkley team, for giving me such a wonderful professional home, and for Scott Mendel, who got me into their hands to begin with.
For my extraordinary friends, each and every one of them, you know how much I treasure you all.
For Quinn, who not only gave me some of the initial inspiration for this book, but let me borrow her daughter’s name to boot.
And in loving memory of Molly Glynn, who was a bright light snuffed way too early. We’re all stepping through it. Love hard. Be kind. Always remember.
Also a small shout-out to the person who invented central air-conditioning. Seriously, like the fifth best thing to happen in my life. Not kidding.