The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake is about a young girl named Rose Edelstein who, at the age of eight, discovers that when eating food she can taste its maker's emotions. Suddenly, Rose knows much more than she wants to know about her mother, the baker, the people who picked tomatoes for the pasta sauce, everyone who has a hand in the preparation of her food.
With this unusual hook, author Aimee Bender makes completely fresh and original the well-worn topic of a young girl growing-up. The book is also the story of Rose's family, each member's strengths, weaknesses and coping strategies. The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake is an interesting novel with just the right touch of magical realism to make it unique and absorbing. It's highly recommended reading.