I’ve wanted this book for a long, long time, Fangirls. Finally, it’s in my possession. It seemed like whenever I had the money to buy it, I forgot to order it. And when I didn’t have the money, I remembered or saw it somewhere. Regardless, its all mine now and I am ever so happy. Of course, Relish is just as incredible as I knew it would be.
Lucy Knisley is one of my all time favorite comic artists/authors. I have read her comics for quite some time. She was actually where my comic reading began, most likely. I first discovered her on YouTube, actually, when she used to make videos of puppets that she made of herself and her then boyfriend (now husband!). She would have the puppets sing songs or tell stories or just talk. It was incredibly entertaining and I loved them. Soon after watching her videos, I learned that she had a website (then StopPayingAttention.com, now just LucyKnisley.com) where she posted autobiographical comics. I had never seen such a thing. I quickly fell in love. Around that same time, she released her first book, French Milk, which I adored. Something about this woman’s style has me hooked.
Relish is just the same. Knisley has a wonderfully quirky, almost journal style of comic making. Her comics are illustrated thoughts. Fantastically illustrated, too! Lucy’s style is unmistakable. When I see a comic she’s done, I can tell it’s her’s right away. That’s true skill, in my opinion. Her styling of writing & illustrating lends itself so well to food, the topic of Relish. The subtitle of this book is “My Life in the Kitchen.” Boy, has she had some life in there. She is the daughter of two extreme foodies. She grew up eating things far from the typical childhood comforts. Hearing about that alone is almost intoxicating. The stories she pairs with food are so enjoyable it gives me butterflies. The relationship she has with both food & people, and the stories that come along with it, are so heartwarming. It’s just so much fun to read about. She discusses the grand dinner parties her mother held as a child, and stories of how, despite the elegant palette she was raised with, she’s got that tender soft spot for junk food. Her stories are sometimes so profound, but still so relatable. It makes for an exhilarating read. What really gets the heart pumping, though, is the recipes that Knisley includes. Instructionals for things from her childhood kitchen, carefully perfected recipes from her own kitchen, and insights to her favorite meals & snacks. They’re all creatively illustrated, the way she uses the words along with the drawings of food is unique & fun. I love to look at where she found to place the text for an ingredient or instruction. She makes the lettering art as well as the illustrations themselves. It’s part of Knisley’s whole package. In addition to all the beautiful recipes, it’s not just fun & a nice insight into Knisley’s life with food, it’s also really helpful. She offers up tips & tricks and fantastic information on all sorts of things. I’ve found myself consulting it, thinking back to something that she said about a certain technique or ingredient. It’s a wonderful type of new age cook book. Mashing up cook books with comics? I mean, seriously dudes, she’s a genius.
Lucy Knisley combines so many lovely things, especially in this book. Often, Knisley is discussing something funny or relatable, and pairs that with something so fun to look at. She takes food and somehow enhances it even more through her filter of honest humor, creative talent, and comic craftsmanship. All of Lucy’s work is respectable, lovable, and just darn good. But she really hit it home with this book. Relish is really a sight to see, experience, and adore.
For your own copy, or to check out her other work, go here!
All images are copyright of their respective owners.