dining out

Novels that Make You Salivate, or Gain Weight?

The novels of my Other Worldly series have a definite food focus. And though protagonist Rowan Layne is a foodie of the first order when it comes to dining out, she’s no culinary wizard in the kitchen. Her sister Gwynne aka Gigi is the one with the gourmand gene. Rowan doesn’t think butter should have to be clarified.

The entire Layne family could be considered food-obsessed. Especially Rowan’s mom when it comes to reservations at their favorite special restaurants, beginning with Monterey Bay in Alienable Rights, first book in the series.

Recently a dear beta reader provided feedback on the manuscript for Being Alien, fourth book in the series coming this fall. Just in time for apple season. Honeycrisps are Rowan’s favorite.

Beta reader Melissa, not yet having read the first three books of the series, said, “If the others have as much food description, I’m going to gain 50 lbs. LOL.”

True that. Because they most certainly do, though I might have gone a bit overboard with the fancy fine dining excursions in Being Alien, set in England and Scotland. That’s the fault of internet marketing—and the gastronomic beauty of it.

I’d wanted to travel to Great Britain before writing this book, but couldn’t due to COVID restrictions. Thanks to enterprising eateries, I was able to peruse full menus online, including cocktails, as well as view restaurant interiors and table décor. Hence, I tasted my first Scottish lobster, Highland gin and English wine, but only in my mind without ever leaving my couch.

Yet it was as if I’d been there, enjoying those lavish meals. Though if I had, I might have gained fifty pounds on scones with clotted cream or Rose’s lime marmalade while writing Being Alien.

Rowan Layne did gain weight while dining deliciously on the moon in Aliens Abound, third book in the series. Lunar restaurants feature regional cuisine from all corners of Earth, with an otherworldly twist. Rowan and her alien pals enjoyed the taste of Europe, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, even the Cajun fare of New Orleans. And, of course, there’s always pizza. But Rowan does not do wasabi.

Chefs in the US embark on a galaxy-to-table movement once the news breaks about aliens among us in Alienable Rights. Humans learn of fruits, vegetables and spices not of Earth, many hailing from Saturn, what’s known as Cultura for its agricultural bounty.

The bright-green Oregano Wortnik hails from the star bearing its name, and is especially tasty on pizza. Did I mention Rowan likes pizza? Preferably with lots of garlic and extraterrestrial mushrooms.

In Feeling Alienated, it’s revealed that Rowan’s sister’s favorite celebrity chef is an alien, what’s known as a Red Orbiter, while dining at her Galaxy Table restaurant on the Las Vegas Strip. Rose Bergin cooks up delectable shrimp specialties for Rowan, with tasty artichokes, which are otherworldly, by the way. They’re also in the thistle family, as Rowan learns during her Scottish adventures in Being Alien.

Rowan might just get a secret message penned in pomegranate ink inside a cannoli from a Red Orbiter in Feeling Alienated. Like a Chinese fortune cookie, except cool and creamy, excellent for sweltering summertime temperatures—and a frantic female wondering where her alien lover absconded to.

There’s more fabulous foodie adventures to be had in future novels of the Other Worldly series, including fine dining at the new OW Winery in Oregon. Be sure to get your reservations early for eclectic extraterrestrial dishes at restaurants Red, White, and Galaxy Vine, opening soon! Plates piled high with planetary pleasures for the most discerning of palates.

Not to mention the wine. But that’s a whole other subject to be sipped and savored at a later date.

One more taste tidbit. Red Orbiter dog cookies are also coming soon, sure to please the palates of Earth’s pups, including Rowan’s dog Bodie. Bone appetite!

3 thoughts on “Novels that Make You Salivate, or Gain Weight?”

  1. OMG!! and then there is the Omelets that are sure to appear in the next book… Can’t wait.
    love the writing and the food dishes are always delish!

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