I am a fan of Judith Hendricks work and have read and enjoyed two of her previous novels, Bread Alone and Baker's Apprentice.
This is the story of Sunny Cooper who grew up in New Mexico on a commune. Her life was affected in many ways as she grew up in this environment both in positive and negative ways. A tragic event made a great impact on her life and as a reader you learn what this event is as Sunny confronts and faces this as an adult. As an adult, in her 30's, she is living in Albuquerque, and finds herself in a relationship with Michael and a best friend Betsy who both betray her in many different ways. Sunny makes a choice to pick up and start over somewhere else and ends up in the town of Harmony on San Miguel Island. She ends up with a new job, makes some wonderful new friends and even learns to ride a motorcycle. She learns she must confront her past to move forward and has an unexpected reunion with her estranged mother.
As I mentioned, Ms. Hendricks books have all had a foodie focus on food and cooking. I love reading books that have a culinary focus, fiction or nonfiction. The Laws of Harmony incorporates the southwestern themes of cooking on the mesa where Sunny grows up in the commune as well as in Sunny's adult life. Sunny has worked in several restaurants and enjoys cooking and baking and her character makes many delicious meals and desserts that sound delectable. The one that stands out is Sunny's Blue Ribbon Blackberry Brownies. These sound heavenly and Ms. Hendricks has created a recipe for them and it is featured on her website, you can find the recipe here. I am definitely going to make these, they would be great as a dessert at a book club discussion for The Laws of Harmony.