Review: Sourdough by Robin Sloan

Sourdough by Robin Sloan

Sourdough is a rather strange story about a woman, Lois, who works at a robotics company writing code to control mechanical arms. She is so busy with work that she doesn’t have time to cook for herself. She lives on “slurry” (a nutritional substitute) and take out from the Clement Street Soup and Sourdough Company. The spicy soup and bread somehow restore her energy and help her sleep better, and she develops a rather unusual friendship with the brothers who run the shop. When they leave San Fransisco, they entrust their sourdough started to Lois, and she begins developing a whole new life.

I don’t really know what it was about this book. I found it rather fascinating and compelling, even though it was so bizarre. It’s by the author of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore, and that was my initial attraction to this book.

Lois discovers things about herself as she starts baking bread. And she finds some rather eccentric characters in her new life, but they all have something to teach her, which was fun to read. I wasn’t sure where this book was going to end up, so that made it exciting to read as well.

I am curious to hear what others thought of this book. In that way it would make a great book club read. It begs to be discussed. Was it meant to be magical realism? I am still not quite sure. If you’ve read this book, please comment and share your thoughts.

Rating: 4 Stars

Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This fact does not in any way impact my thoughts/feelings about the book.

Robin Sloan
September 5, 2017

Lois Clary, a software engineer at a San Francisco robotics company, codes all day and collapses at night. When her favourite sandwich shop closes up, the owners leave her with the starter for their mouthwatering sourdough bread.
Lois becomes the unlikely hero tasked to care for it, bake with it and keep this needy colony of microorganisms alive. Soon she is baking loaves daily and taking them to the farmer's market, where an exclusive close-knit club runs the show. When Lois discovers another, more secret market, aiming to fuse food and technology, a whole other world opens up. But who are these people, exactly?

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