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A Slice of Life: At Coulter's Restaurant, #1

A Slice of Life: At Coulter's Restaurant, #1

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A Slice of Life: At Coulter's Restaurant, #1

valutazioni:
4.5/5 (2 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
103 pagine
1 ora
Pubblicato:
Jan 15, 2012
ISBN:
9781498986373
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

Grace Coulter has been hiding in the kitchen of her family restaurant since she was eight years old. That's when the name-calling began. Stretch, skinny-minny, boy in girl's clothes, all because of the slender height that had her towering over even the tallest boys in the class.

Now, nearly thirty years later, Grace is head chef of the failing restaurant and still hiding in the kitchen. Like many businesses during the current recession, Coulter's may have to start laying off employees or even close. But Grace has a plan to save the restaurant and the people she's known all her life; a plan that will force her to go out into the world and face her fears.

Pubblicato:
Jan 15, 2012
ISBN:
9781498986373
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

Margaret Lake was born in New Jersey, but moved to Florida in her early teens and has lived there ever since. Reading has been her favorite activity since she was ten years old. Even after purchasing a Kindle, she still had seven large bookcases filled with paper books. It took years for her to part with the majority of them. Her other passion is history, especially English History, dating from when she first read "Katherine" by Anya Seton. When the inspiration came to write her first novel, she naturally gravitated to the Wars of the Roses because of that book. Her favorite author is Susan Howatch, her favorite book is "Outlander" and her favorite series is Harry Potter. She led a Harry Potter book club at the elementary school and helped with the chess club at both the elementary and high schools. Margaret rescued a nine-year old Jack Russell Terrier named Angelo who passed at the age of 15 on December 3, 2017. Now she has Mikey, a teeny-tiny two year old chihuahua mix (actually 50% chihuahua, 25% miniature poodle, 12.5% maltese and 12.5% terrier according to his DNA), adopted from the Humane Society on March 7, 2018. Mikey has gone a long way toward filling the empty space in her heart left by the loss of Angelo.

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Anteprima del libro

A Slice of Life - Margaret Lake

A SLICE OF LIFE

a novella

by

Margaret Lake

Author of

historical, contemporary,

and fantasy romance

illustrated children’s books

graphic novels

––––––––

DESCRIPTION

Grace Coulter has been hiding in the kitchen of her family restaurant since she was eight years old. That’s when the name-calling began. Stretch, skinny-minny, boy in girl’s clothes, all because of the slender height that had her towering over even the tallest boys in the class.

Now, nearly thirty years later, Grace is head chef of the failing restaurant and still hiding in the kitchen. Like many businesses during the current recession, Coulter’s may have to start laying off employees or even close. But Grace has a plan to save the restaurant and the people she’s known all her life; a plan that will force her to go out into the world and face her fears.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter One

Grace clutched her notebook to her chest and tried to calm her beating heart. She could see the bus coming down the street and knew she'd have to start her project once she got on. Breathing deeply and repeating relax to herself over and over seemed to be helping, but not fast enough. The bus stopped with a whoosh of brakes and the door opened in front of her. There was no one else at the stop so she couldn't even hang back behind a bunch of people. She needed to be first on the bus anyway so she could have her pick of seats.

This was her project, her idea, and if she was going to save her family's restaurant, she had to bite the bullet and get over her shyness. Coulter's was her father's life and her mother's, too; not to mention hers.

She'd always been able to hide in the kitchen, working under her father with her mother in the front. Now, with her father's illness and him having to cut down on his hours, she had to take the lead. Oh, there was no problem with cooking. The problem was in supervising the staff. For now, Dad was able to supervise while she took over the responsibilities of head chef. But soon; soon she would have to do it all.

Grace had been plagued all her life with debilitating shyness. Blushing, stammering, these were just a couple of the things that made her school years a living hell. That’s why she couldn't wait to get to the restaurant every day after school. She would sit in a corner out of the way doing her homework. And while she did, she watched and learned. Before long, Grace had worked up the courage to ask her father to let her help. She was only eight years old, but already knew what she wanted to do when she grew up.

Dad had been so pleased with her. At least this time when she blushed, it wasn't from embarrassment. By the time she was twelve, Grace was chopping vegetables and doing a lot of the prep work. When she was sixteen, she told her parents she wanted to drop out of school and go to work full-time in the restaurant. They weren't too pleased with her decision, but they knew their daughter had been terribly unhappy in school. If she promised to get her GED, they would gladly hire her. When she was twenty-two, the apartment over the restaurant became vacant and she moved into it.

Grace always counted the day she went to work at Coulter's as the beginning of her life ... her real life.

Most of the staff had watched her grow up and had learned to respect her as a hard worker and gifted chef. There was no reason for her to be shy around them. Most days she smiled and said good morning, although it had taken her a long time to get to that point. But it was one thing to work alongside them every day in the ease and camaraderie of the kitchen. It was quite another to give orders to people who were ten or fifteen years older. She knew the day was coming when she would have to face that challenge. Dad wasn't getting any better.

On top of that, the recession had cut down their business and layoffs were looming. That's when Grace conceived the idea of a cookbook. She didn't know how much the book would make, but the Coulter name should count for something. And if they were to avoid layoffs, she had to move quickly.

That's why the bus ride. Her idea was to talk to people, find out about their lives, and get their favorite recipe to put in the book. She'd like to get photos, too. It would make each recipe so much more personal. Did she have the sheer guts to do this? She hoped so. A lot of people were depending on her.

With one last deep breath, Grace ducked her head and rushed onto the bus, barely stopping to throw the correct change into the till. She didn't see the amused look the driver sent her way. Neither did she realize that he held up the bus until she was safely seated. With seasoned riders, he knew they would hold onto the poles or the seatbacks as they made their way down the aisle. This lady had a death grip on her notebook which wasn't going to do her a damned bit of good against the sway of the bus.

Grace found a seat at the back of the bus away from the other passengers. Her fear of making a public fool of herself was overriding her desire to do the interviews. Dad had made a good start among the regular customers at Coulter's and now it was her turn to expand on what he had already accomplished. Her palms were sweaty and her throat was dry; something she hadn't felt in a long time. Mainly because she'd been hiding in the kitchen for most of her life.

This wouldn't do at all. She was 37 years old, for crying out loud, and should be able to at least look at people. When they came to the next stop, Grace lifted her head and watched new passengers come aboard and other passengers leave.

A young man in his mid-twenties with dreadlocks and one of those knitted hats; an elderly man with a cane in a suit and tie, sporting a neatly trimmed beard; two teenage girls (who probably should have been in school) wearing matching jeans, tank tops and nose rings, and a twenty-something woman with a baby struggling to pull a stroller loaded with grocery bags up the steps.

Mrs. Wall, how many times do I hafta tell you to let me help with that, the bus driver admonished her springing up to help.

He took the baby from her, jiggling and cooing at the infant while she dug in her purse for the fare. Grace was surprised when Mr. Dreadlocks picked up the stroller and set the groceries beside Mrs. Wall. He folded it up and set it on the seat in front of her while the driver handed the baby back to her. Apparently this was a ritual they had gone through many times.

Mr. SuitNTie nodded politely at Mrs. Wall but kept his hands folded across the crook of his cane, staring straight ahead.

The two girls, Miss Nosy One and Miss Nosy Two, giggled at their own private joke as teenage girls had been doing for centuries.

The driver sat in his seat and turned around to face the passengers. Everybody all settled? Okay, let's get this stagecoach on the road.

This, too, seemed like an old ritual as several of the passengers smiled at the driver. She hadn't looked at his name tag when she boarded the bus. Heck, she hadn't even looked at the man, but now she did. He was

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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (5/5)
    Cute, heartwarming story. One of those uncomplicated comfort reads and very romantic.
  • (4/5)
    sweet short feel good story