Review: Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmas

Title: Lessons in Chemistry

Author: Bonnie Garmus

Pages: 400 Pages

Publisher: Random House

The Blurb

Chemist Elizabeth Zott is not your average woman. In fact, Elizabeth Zott would be the first to point out that there is no such thing.

But it’s the early 1960s and her all-male team at Hastings Research Institute take a very unscientific view of equality. Except for one: Calvin Evans, the lonely, brilliant, Nobel-prize nominated grudge-holder who falls in love with – of all things – her mind. True chemistry results.

Like science, life is unpredictable. Which is why a few years later, Elizabeth Zott finds herself not only a single mother, but the reluctant star of America’s most beloved cooking show, Supper at Six. Elizabeth’s unusual approach to cooking (‘combine one tablespoon acetic acid with a pinch of sodium chloride’) proves revolutionary. But as her following grows, not everyone is happy. Because as it turns out, Elizabeth Zott isn’t just teaching women to cook. She’s daring them to change the status quo.

The Review

Well that was deeply satisfying.

Bonnie Garmus’s novel Lessons in Chemistry is the story of Elizabeth Zott. Friend. Mother. But most importantly she is a scientist. Time hasn’t been kind to Elizabeth Zott. She was born in the wrong era when women were meant to be subservient and they certainly weren’t meant to practise the sciences. But Elizabeth Zott breaks the mould. When she gets the opportunity to present her own cookery show she takes on the challenge in the only way she knows how…by making it an experiment.

Lessons in Chemistry is up there as one of my favourite books of the year. I took my time with this novel, I didn’t want to hoover it because I had heard so many amazing things and I am so glad that I did because it was a phenomenal look at the expectations of society and how if you give people a chance they can surprise you.

Lessons in Chemistry is an absolutely corker of a novel and one I know will be in my top ten of the year.

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus is available now.

For more information regarding Bonnie Garmus (@BonnieGarmus) please visit her Twitter page.

For more information regarding Random House (@ramdomhouse) please visit

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