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3.7 out of 5 stars82
3.7 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I recently reviewed another cookbook, Bought, Borrowed & Stolen: Recipes and Knives from a Travelling Chef by Allegra McEvedy, which is as much a work of art as it is a cookbook as it is a travelogue. Allegra's book is beautifully bound and is just so very nice. This book is very similar in style....having photo's laid out on virtually every page depicting his travels and the finished dishes. On some pages the mosaic effect of travel pictures and travelogue descriptions, overshadow the recipes. It is a curious combination of travel diary and cookbook. I am sure some will love the style, whilst others will not.

His journey across the World goes from Venice, Tokyo, Sweden, Scotland, New York, Sydney, London and the Great Barrier Reef. Along the way he describes the seafood and fish recipes that he liked. All the ideas and recipes are relatively simple and do not use complicated or difficult to find ingredients. Just like Jake, I too have a total aversion to cooking fish, so found the recipes I have already tried, easy to prepare and serve. The sauces I have tried, are also delicate to the taste and do not try to over empower the fish taste, distracting from the fish itself.

The book is quite unique as it is all the product of one man's work, photo's, travelogue, recipes and graphic design. If you are into fish and seafood this book is an absolute treat and well worth buying. Whilst I have not tried every recipe, the ones I have tried have been easy to prepare and taste great. The design and layout may detract some readers from what are great recipes.

Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I feel I must begin by pointing out that this isn't a cookery book: true it contains a selection of recipes, but this is much more a story about the author's journey to better appreciate fish in cookery, illustrated with a choice of dishes that he encountered along the way. The author is also - primarily - a designer, and the whole book is styled like a journal, filled with a patchwork of images, typography and food photography from the places he visited including Sweden, Tokyo, New York and Australia. It's a fascinating read for the foodie, with a kaleidoscope of ingredients and flavours that give one itchy feet and a desire to see the icy fish market in Venice or the cornucopia of life drawn from pacific waters firsthand. This can also be its main problem; some of the recipes include ingredients that would seem hard to find outside of elitist London markets or chance-discovered food shops, leaving the reader frustrated as to how to recreate the dishes given their lack of friends in Sweden or a second home in Venice. Some comfort is given with recipes sourced in Scotland and on the south-east coast of England, that are more achievable in the UK kitchen. Enjoy the book for its continent-crossing adventure, and leave the cooking to the imagination.
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on 17 October 2012
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
When you read the overview of this book you still get the impression that the book is a general recipe book, be under no illusion as it's merely a travel journal about discovering places to buy, eat and cook fish different ways.

I eat a varied diet of fish, vegetarian and meat but there are quite a few of the recipes that don't entice me what so ever, rather than some of the average recipes on the likes of cuttlefish or bland squid I would like to see a modern twist on what is Thailands best squid dish with chilli and garlic.

The layout of the book was modern, vibrant and different but that didn't please me either as it made reading the recipes quite awkward. It feels more like a art and design project rather than something that is functional, if the author was more well known then I think I might accept the approach a little more - just didn't feel it was a credible variety and flow of food.

I would certainly recommend having a look though it before purchasing to make sure it is for you.
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VINE VOICEon 30 January 2012
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I thought this book would be good because I am not much of a fish eater and I don't like handling fish for cooking, wondered if this would make me bolder - I had heard this book was also a travel book of various places in the world which appeals as well. So I thought not a waste on me.

When received was very impressed with the book, large (not really fat though), nicely presented in an imaginative way and looked really interesting,-a little light on recipes though. Expected it to be a bit more of a cookbook than it is. It is more of a conversation than I thought.

The book is well written and interesting, bit of an arty book, if you want a fish cook book not the one for you, if you love fish and love resding about that - it is for you.

There is a lot of reading in the book, small print. It didn't really change my view.
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VINE VOICEon 7 April 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a good looking book, in my opinion best described as a cross between travel and cook book.

The travel bits are mixed with the recipes and vice versa and one first needs to get used to the format - it's designed in bit of jetset style / lifestyle with large pages with picture and not much text (that often does not say much either).

However once you get over the hip design and actually find the recipes - you'll be very pleasantly surprised. Some of them are fantastic (I only tried two, but looking forward for more)! The squid and octopus - yum yum and so different than what you normally do.

As a travel book - no, but as a cook book - definitely yes.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
In at the Deep End is definitely a cookbook more destined for your bookshelf than your kitchen drawer. Part recipe book and part travelogue it features fish dishes from seven destinations around the world, together with some journal-style background information about the author's travels there. The author is also the book's designer and typographer and has created a funky, bustling style for his book - each of the seven destinations gets its own chapter, each with its own visual style and fonts. It makes for an immersive read, like looking through someone's travel scrapbook, but sometimes it feels like there's a lot of visual noise between you and the (few) recipes.

As if writing, photographing and designing his own book wasn't enough Jake Tilson has also released a set of free audio podcasts you can listen to, with one for each of the destinations/chapters. You can download them for free through iTunes - just search for 'jake tilson' in the iTunes Store to find them. Then you can listen to the sounds from each destination as you 'visit' them while reading the book. It might not be the first book you'd reach for when you need a quick family meal, but if you love to curl up with a good cookbook and a cuppa then it's one of the more original I've seen.
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
not sure it's entirely helpful for cooking

I've had this for a while now and although I sort of like the mix of recipies with travel stories, I also don't quite know what to do with it. It seems silly to have a cook book on the living room shelf but at the same time, it doesn't quite fit in with the other books in the kitchen.

I've tried a few of the recipies now and they were interesting and tasted good, but I'm not sure I've reached the same epiphany as he did on his journey - even after reading it cover to cover.
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on 26 December 2011
This is a nicely produced book by a nice-sounding bloke, but to be frank it's too much about him and his travels - recounted in long waffly sentences in small print on big pages. It's also overdesigned, as you might expect from a designer, and written on the basis of a jetset lifestyle I don't identify with. So I agree with the other 3-star reviewers. Having said that, the recipes are actually good and interesting, particularly on molluscs (clam, squid, octopus &c.).
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Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
First off, this is not a book about learning to like fish. I was interested in this book as someone who generally steers clear of seafood because it seems alien, wondering whether it might make a good introduction to aquatic food. But that pretext may hook you (no pun intended) into buying the book for the wrong reasons.

This book is for people who are already international jet-setting lovers of exotic fish. It's not an introduction to it.

This book is part recipe book, part travelogue, part photo-scrapbook. Jake Tilson, who frankly clearly already enjoys eating and cooking fish and decides to learn more about it as a backstory to justify the publisher's advance (if there was one), travels the world looking for unusual fish to buy cook and eat. He visits places including Tokyo, Sweden, Sydney, and Venice.

Tilson is described as "author, photographer, designer, typographer and passionate cook", so the book is 100% his own work. It's admirable in itself but ultimately it ends up being just too self-indulgent. The text and photographs are simply too much "look what fun we had travelling the world on our holidays" and not enough actually about fish! OK so there are some cursory sections concerning sustainability and the importance of buying local, but proportionally, not enough. (And did you carbon-offset your many airmiles, Mr Tilson?..)

The arrangement of the pages is sometimes a bit jumbled, the text is a bit too light (when it jokingly says "read within 1 day of purchase" on the back cover, that wouldn't be too hard), but overall the thing that bugged me about this book is the same problem Jake Tilson has with some of the fish he buys- that it simply isn't what it says on the label.
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VINE VOICEon 19 November 2011
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
When I read the write up about this book I was really excited, as I have been trying to find ways of making fish more appealing to myself since I started eating it again to expand my vegetarian diet when abroad, and thought the writter of this book and I had something in common. After a couple of years of being a reborn fish eater I am still not really convinced, so when I read that the author of this book was writing it to battle a long-term phobia of fish, I thought this is the book for me.

When it arrived I started reading it straight away and it was immediately obvious that the author was actually scared of fish rather tan disliking eating it, as I was, but I kept reading anyway. The first dish in the book uses sea food, which I count as "extreme fish" and so was definitely the gentle transition approach I had been hoping for, more like jumping in with both feet. I could see that I wasn't going to get on with the recipes, which was a shame as I thought this book was going to be my cure.

Having had these reservations about the way it was promoted when compared with my own perception, I still enjoyed the "artist's" approach to putting the book together and did spend most of the book questioning how the author funded the round the world trip to the places covered in the book. It seems he has international friends and offers of work. A very lucky man with a very lucky family.
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