Lizzy & Jane
Summary (from Goodreads): Lizzy and Jane never saw eye to eye. But when illness brings them together, they discover they may be more like Austen’s famous sisters after all.
Lizzy was only a teenager when her mother died of cancer. Shortly after, Lizzy fled from her home, her family, and her cherished nickname. After working tirelessly to hone her gift of creating magic in the kitchen, Elizabeth has climbed the culinary ladder to become the head chef of her own New York restaurant, Feast. But as her magic begins to elude her, Paul, Feast’s financial backer, brings in someone to share her responsibilities and her kitchen. So Elizabeth flees again.
In a desperate attempt to reconnect with her gift, Elizabeth returns home. But her plans are derailed when she learns that her estranged sister, Jane, is battling cancer. Elizabeth surprises everyone—including herself—when she decides to stay in Seattle and work to prepare healthy, sustaining meals for Jane as she undergoes chemotherapy. She also meets Nick and his winsome son, Matt, who, like Elizabeth, are trying to heal from the wounds of the past.
As she tends to Jane's needs, Elizabeth's powers begin to return to her, along with the family she left behind so long ago. Then Paul tries to entice her back to New York, and she is faced with a hard decision: stay and become Lizzy to her sister’s Jane, or return to New York and the life she worked so hard to create?
Review: This book combined so many different themes that I enjoy - discovering a new path in life, developing a relationship with a sister, exploring new recipes - but the addition of Jane's struggles with cancer and chemotherapy took this book to an entirely different place. While it was difficult to read the details about a woman battling cancer, it brought a seriousness and depth to the book that made it even more satisfying than I had expected. I'm not an Austen addict, so I found the references to Austen not in keeping with the other themes of the book, and frankly, a little distracting from the story.
Rating: 4 stars