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Summary

Broought to you by Penguin.

At the moment her mother died, Olivia Potts was baking a cake. She was trying to impress the man who would later become her husband. Meanwhile, 275 miles away, her mother was dying.  

In the grief-stricken months that followed, Olivia came home from her job as a criminal barrister miserable and tired, and baked soda bread, pizza, and chocolate banana cake. 

Even when it went badly (which was often), cooking brought her comfort. So she concocted a plan: she would begin a newer, happier life, filled with fewer magistrates and more macarons. 

She left the bar for Le Cordon Bleu, plunging headfirst into the eccentric world of patisserie. Interspersed with recipes ranging from passionfruit pavlova to her mother's shepherd's pie, this is a heartbreaking, hilarious, life-affirming memoir about dealing with grief, falling in love and learning how to bake a really, really good cake.

©2019 Olivia Potts (P)2019 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about A Half Baked Idea

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I thought this book was about baking

It's not about baking but about a person's difficult recovery of losing a loved one

One thing that struck me as awful was the author saying something in the lines of that it is worse to lose a loved one quickly without warning, than for the loved one to die of illness and the family having time to say goodbye. I disagree strongly. That is a selfish point of view of a healthy person who would prefer to make her loved ones suffer prolonged pain and fear to than put herself through the discomfort of the shocking news of the loss. You're the one who gets to live. You merely have to make the effort to adjust your mindset to accepting the loss. Painful, yes, but not as painful as cancer! Be grateful your loved one didn't have time to suffer or be scared. And that you get to be someone who has not witnessed a loved one in extreme pain. I have lost my mum and several relatives to cancer. I assure you I would give my own life happily if I could have spared my mum and the others the months of torture they endured while slowly dying from this horrible disease. There's nothing worse than being helpless beside your loved one's bedside watching them be eaten away by the cancer, slowly withering and in agony and afraid. I felt the author came across quite self-centered and uncaring of the feelings of others in her story. Rather than be a comforting story about baking it was a story of a person who thinks the world should revolve aroung her needs, complaining about her mother's death and more. It made me quite upset.

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What Can I Say. It's Wonderful!

one of the most enjoyable audio books I have ever listened to. Olivia Potts story is sad, funny, heartwarming and wonderful. I will definitely listen to it again, and try some of her scrummy recipes and buy the book to read. Amazing woman, clever writer, fab story.

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I Adored This Book

I absolutely adored this book. Just so so good. great book and wonderfully read. I am recommending this to all my friends and family.

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Surprisingly Intriguing & Moving

I bought this on a whim and got completely caught up in this story of loss and baking and coping. It’s funny, tender, moving and real. Highly recommended

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Fabulous. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Beautifully written. Warm, smart, touching and funny, Olivia Potts does a fabulous job of telling this very personal story of transformation, grief and personal growth. Gripping. Couldn't put it down.

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Moving, funny and delicious

A beautiful memoir that consistently brought tears to my eyes (much to the bemusement of commuters I passed on my walk home) as well as laughter at her honest and brutal self-awareness.

Moving, funny and rather mouth-watering all rolled into one book.

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Disappointed

Too many recipes probably just read from a cookery book . The author was very self centred in the grieve for her mother. No real story line.

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  • Elizabeth
  • 31-07-20

The perfect pandemic listen

As someone who loves The Great British Bake-Off, BBC TV series, and psychology, I found this book very satisfying. Potts write with warmth, self-deprecating humor, and sincerity about losing her mother, switching careers, and falling in love. Her expert reading of the audiobook displays the skills she learned during her many childhood speech competitions. Highly recommended!