Hassan Haji, a boy from Mumbai, embarks, along with his boisterous family, on a picaresque journey first to London and then across Europe, before they ultimately open a restaurant opposite a famous chef, Madame Mallory, in the remote French village of Lumiere.
A culinary war ensues, pitting Hassan's Mumbai-toughened father against the imperious Michelin-starred cordon bleu, until Madame Mallory realizes that Hassan is a cook with natural talents far superior to her own.
©2014 Richard C Morais (P)2014 W F Howes Ltd
"Don't read this book if you're hungry. You might eat it." (Simon Beaufoy, Oscar Award winning screenwriter of Slumdog Millionaire)
"I enjoyed this book very much. It has great charm and is colorfully written, sensual and evocative" (Joanne Harris)
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"A real find."
A book about a family and a man, cooking and food, a story about the payments we make for the things we love. It starts in Mumbai and ends in Paris, we taste curries,molecular gastronomy, French country cuisine, and just home cooking.
If you like food as possibility and art, if you enjoy the suffering of making a business of what you like doing, if you follow what is going on in the world of cuisine. this story will resonate louder and will remind you of some events in the Michelin star wars of a few years back, and give a little depth to the news paper one line reports. Or if you like a small family saga with a difference this book will give you a lovely story.
A joy to read without the usual sentimentality of family sagas, a real find.
If you are a foodie or a chef this is your book, but to us normal book readers, there was too much food and not enough story. Maybe the film is better, this is the only book I have ever listened to that I fast forwarded to the end.
"Unfulfilled promise "
Starts of with great promise with an interesting story and glimpses of where it could go but the second half just becomes a bit dull. I liked the narrator but found his French accents grating at times.
This was a fabulous listen. the prose is magnificent, superb descriptions of food, meals, scenery, yet it is immensely listenable as the narrative moves at a smart pace. It is funny, compassionate, sad and very human. A really enjoyable book, with characters so well drawn and so rounded it felt like they really existed. This is an utterly charming book. If you enjoyed marigold hotel, peter mayle's Provence tales and enjoy a pleasant undemanding yarn you will love this book as much as I did.
"A delight of a journey"
The opening of the Indian restaurant
Yes. Clear and full of character
Yes. The interplay of characters was at times hilarious and at other times so sad.
An entertaining book with great characters and settings. The interplay of cultures and personalities reflects a changing shift in society. Highly enjoyable
"Enjoyable listening mouth watering experience"
Could not help but almost drool at imagining the fumes emanating from the described dishes. My only regret is the French pronunciation, but I speak French, so I might be more difficult to please...
l wasn't aware that this book existed until l watched the movie. The book is so much more better than the movie, though the movie was superb. l felt like l travelled from lndia to Southall and them France with Hajis. l loved every nuance and titbit. The history, the descriptions and the words held me transfixed as the story unfolded.
The narrator was stellar. He was totally believable. lt was sad that this beautiful story had to end. Simply to me, it was spell binding.
Loved the story - enhanced by the wonderful narration. Saw the film, but the book was so much better. Not to be listened to on an empty stomach, though.
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