With an introduction by John BanvilleWinner of the Whitbread First Novel Award 1996.To like something is to want to ingest it and, in that sense, is to submit to the world; to like something is to succumb, in a small but contentful way, to death.Tarquin Winot - hedonist, food obsessive, ironist and snob - travels a circuitous route from the Hotel Splendide in Portsmouth to his cottage in Provence. Along the way he tells the story of his childhood and beyond through a series of delectable menus, organized by season. But this ...
With an introduction by John BanvilleWinner of the Whitbread First Novel Award 1996.To like something is to want to ingest it and, in that sense, is to submit to the world; to like something is to succumb, in a small but contentful way, to death.Tarquin Winot - hedonist, food obsessive, ironist and snob - travels a circuitous route from the Hotel Splendide in Portsmouth to his cottage in Provence. Along the way he tells the story of his childhood and beyond through a series of delectable menus, organized by season. But this is no ordinary cookbook, and as we are drawn into Tarquin's world, a far more sinister mission slowly reveals itself . . .Winner of the 1996 Whitbread First Novel Award, John Lanchester's The Debt to Pleasure is a wickedly funny ode to food; an erotic and sensual culinary journey. Its elegant, intelligent and unhinged narrator is nothing less than a work of art himself.
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John Lanchester is one of the smartest, funniest writers working today. I am reading all of his books and enjoying each one as I go.
Apr 26, 2009
This novel is a as satisfying and decadent as the recipes it contains. Lanchester weaves rich, vivid descriptions of the best parts of England and France with his narcissitc narrator's twisted tale. Read hungry.
Jan 10, 2008
Finish this book!
I have to admit, I read this book because a friend of mine loved it and couldn't find anyone who would read it. I figured I can read almost anything, so borrowed her copy and started reading.
It was odd, sometimes strangely amusing, and ... I ... was ... not... getting...through... it.
BUT THEN - something weird happened in the book, and I thought, "huh?" and finished the book (don't peek!), said "oh WOW"... and then turned to the front and read the whole book through again.
Yeah. It's that kind of book. I can't tell you what happens, or it will ruin the ending. But what you will find is an extremely self-centered narrator taking you on a sort of food tour. I have two favorite lines in the book. The first one is "I myself have always disliked being called a 'genius.' It is fascinating to notice how quick people have been to intuit and avoid this term." The second quote is the last line of the book (don't peek!).
If you are a fan of unreliable narrators, I highly recommend this book.
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