For this month’s Capsule book club, we’re relaxing with a delicious cheeseboard and reading a book that absolutely nails the highs and lows of long-term friendship with Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin.
In amongst all the chaos and last-minute lists of the Christmas countdown, it can be easy to forget the greatest part of the festive period: it’s the perfect opportunity to see some of your favourite people for a long overdue catch-up. But how do you take the good (socialising! Snacks! Merriment!) without getting bogged down in the bad (stress? Recipes that overwhelm you? Deadlines?)
Solution: You switch out your dinner parties or your summer lunches for everyone’s favourite – the glory that is a cheese board. A platter meal that feels like it is so spiritually aligned to a gals’ hang out because a) nobody has to pre-prepare anything, b) everything can be eaten at room temperature, so no-one is slaving over a hot stove and missing all the fun and c) you can snack constantly, fuelling your multiple-hour chatting. And making things even easier? HelloFresh is offering their Italian-style Cheese & Charcuterie Board, so the only issue you have to worry about is providing a platter and remembering what counts as a secret and what counts as fun gossip.
And as we all start lining up our summer reading for the summer holidays, you want a book match that’s as fun, riveting and clever as your favourite group of friends. And boy, do we have that book for you.
Set across 30 years of one friendship, Tomorrow, And Tomorrow, And Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin is an utter delight of a book that will appeal to anyone who was a teenager in the 1990s, because The Oregon Trail AND Magic Eye paintings are referenced early on enough to make sure you know you’re in safe hands.
It tells the story of Sam Mazur and Sadie Green, who we meet as they are university students – after they have spent the past decade being mad at each other. But past grievances are forgotten when the pair quickly become friends again and start creating a video game together, which makes them very famous and very rich by their mid-20s.
The plot of the novel is, at times, written like a video game – meaning it takes different twists and turns and even has point-of-view changes, but never fear, you do not need to speak Gamer in order to get it (I haven’t played a video game since the mid 1990s and this was still one of my favourite books of the year).
Over the 30 years of friendship, the book looks at how identity changes, the cost of creativity, gender roles in entrepreneurship and body politics, all of which makes it sound very dry and self-important, when the opposite is true: it is a fast, glorious and multi-faceted read that will make you laugh and – tiny warning – will make you cry as well. The perfect book to read solo and then discuss en masse – you’ll want your book club along for the ride with you on this one.
Italian-style Cheese & Charcuterie Board
Prosciutto Toscano, 80g
Coppa Di Parma
Totara Tasty Cheddar
Black & White Sesame Lavosh
Onion Chutney, 40g
Vintage Five Forks Semi Soft Cheese
Tip: Take your cheeses out of the fridge about 30 minutes before serving for maximum ooze and flavour.