Book Review: Eating for Beginners by Melanie Rehak

Eating for Beginners: An Education in the Pleasures of Food from Chefs, Farmers, and One Picky KidI just finished reading EATING FOR BEGINNERS, a new memoir by Melanie Rehak who you might remember from her book Girl Sleuth: Nancy Drew and the Woman Who Created Her. In this book Rehak explores all the places food comes from, trying to really understand the choices she is making when deciding what to eat (and what to feed her picky toddler). She joins the kitchen staff of a small Brooklyn restaurant, visits local farms and suppliers, battles sea sickness on a fishing boat and attempts to get her son to eat more than just cocktail party foods.

It’s kind of like the Omnivores Dilemma for mothers – except I think everyone should read it, not just parents. I found the book so accessable and enjoyable to read – her writing style is conversational in all the best ways but with content that is informative and with the potential to really broaden your view of the food industry. If you have a passion for eating local foods or are interested in why some people do, this book is a real eye opener but it’s also totally guilt-free. Rehak is all about doing what works best in every situation – and if that means frozen chicken nuggets, that’s fine!

The book reads like a good friend sharing her experiences and giving all the best information she can in the most accessible way. I love how expertly Rehak combines her parental anecdotes  with tales of restaurant and farm life – with some fun recipes and silliness thrown in! It had me laughing on a nightly basis, drooling over delicious descriptions of food, ear marking recipes and quoting passages out loud to my husband constantly! I am not exaggerating when I say it was one of the best books I’ve read this year and maybe ever – I want to share this book with everyone I know!


You can get your own copy of Eating for Beginners at local booksellers and online retailers like


Thanks to Houghton Mifflin, I’m giving away 10 copies of Eating for Beginners at Mommas Review! Head over there for a chance to win – the giveaway ends July 27th at 12pm EST.