Don’t slap a cheese sandwich next to Jacqueline Deval’s heroine, Pomme. She’ll rhapsodize about it—then poison it. Pomme is extremely efficient when it comes to nastiness (those who annoy her develop food poisoning, end up in prison, or worse) but passionate about books and cooking. She creates, and luxuriates in, meals described by literary geniuses in Reckless Appetites: A Culinary Romance. The pages overflow mouthwateringly with ”the silky taste of chocolate,” ”bread generously spread with the poetry of butter,” and 84 recipes from the likes of Colette and Dickens. Pomme’s story is told imaginatively through these menus and literary homages, but Deval’s arias about fresh produce sometimes obscure Pomme’s delicious rottenness.