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The Reluctant Cannibals by [Flitcroft, Ian]
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The Reluctant Cannibals Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Length: 256 pages Word Wise: Enabled

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Review

A truly compelling read with a shocking climax. Well written and incredibly descriptive, the author of this particular work has clearly done homework about the field of gastronomy to produce a wonderful and memorable read. --Publishers Weekly

'I was going to say a brilliant debut novel, but it needs no qualification. A brilliant novel, full stop.' --Paula Leyden, winner of the 2011/12 Eilís Dillon Award

About the Author

Ian Flitcroft studied medicine at Oxford University, and then went on to complete a D.Phil in Neurophysiology. During these 9 years, he started developing a fascination with all things culinary and on finishing his doctorate, gained dining rights at Pembroke College as a John Lockett Memorial Scholar.

Ian has travelled around the world twice (once in each direction) and sampled many of the world's strangest foods en-route from snakes and scorpions, to a soup in Thailand that required all his anatomical knowledge to deduce its contents. Ian is a long term member of the Slow Food Movement in Ireland, a collector of old culinary-related books and an avid cook and wine collector. Ian now works as a consultant eye surgeon in Dublin, where he has lived for over 10 years. The Reluctant Cannibals is Ian's first novel.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 523 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Legend Press (1 Oct. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00BU2NGQ2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #254,367 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When an Oxford professor discovers he has a serious medical condition, the university's secret dining society have the chance to enjoy the gastronomic experience of a lifetime...

This book had me absolutely hooked from its opening chapter, which begins in appropriately gastro-horror style with the death of a senior Japanese diplomat after eating a dish of ineptly self-prepared fugu. From this attention-grabbing opening, we're taken into a beautifully shadowy world of rare wines, unusual foods, bizarre dining practices and moderately insane academics - all utterly focused on their stomachs.

The writing is elaborate and evocative, with foodie descriptions that are almost disturbingly luscious. The characters are definitely more stereotypes than well-rounded personalities, but that's absolutely right for the style of the book; an elaborate Porterhouse-ish satire on the insular world of Oxford colleges. I don't want to spoil a narrative that's heavily plot-driven so it's hard to say much more about this book other than that I loved it...but if you, like me, enjoy novels that are right on the borderline between black comedy and horror, this is a definite recommendation.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A beautifully crafted novel - he is clearly a gifted writer and deserves the plaudits he has won. This is a deliciously (in every sense of the word) funny and slightly whacky book, beautifully observed and with an easy flowing style that carries you through the story. You can't wait to find out the denouement - which doesn't disappoint - but the plot line is far from obvious and the characters are given a life beyond the page they are written on. A highly recommended and entertaining read - there is nothing tasteless or unpleasant about it and you would have to be squeamish in the extreme not to enjoy the antics of the members of the dining club at the heart of the story.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I was drawn to this book by the truly splendid title, but don't think this is a tale of desperate survivors of an air crash or some such incident; no this is set amid the enchanting spires of Oxford University. We meet the members of the dangerously exclusive, `Shadow Faculty of Gastronomic Science. This is a dining society of Oxford Dons who make it their life's aim to turn gastronomy into the science they believe it truly is and to taste all that the world of culinary delights has to offer - and drink a fair bit too.

Then one of the members - Professor Arthur Plantagenet gets the unwelcome news of his sudden and unexpected demise due to a dicky heart. Undeterred by this quite catastrophic news, he sees it as a way to further push the envelope of culinary frontiers - and comes up with a plan. This he entrusts into a meticulous and detailed will of what is to be done with his `remains' once he has shuffled off his `mortal coil'; oh and he leave a rather generous legacy too - or should that be leg-acy?

Soon the doctors are proven right and his plan swings into action, as well as the normal directions one of the more galling parts is that he wants to know what `we' taste like and he is only too ready to donate his body, or at least a bit of it, to the field of gastronomic inquiry. That's right he wants them to eat him - and make some tasting notes too. What follows is a tale of subterfuge, modest rebellion, lots of eating, some marvellous recipes and some rather ungallant behaviour by certain individuals.

I really enjoyed this book, Ian Flitcroft has a way with words that is almost Wodehouse in that the humour is both dry and full of wit and insight. The characters really come alive - except for Professor Plantagenet of course - and the story is totally addictive.
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By S Riaz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 14 Aug. 2014
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This debut novel is darkly and deliciously disturbing. Set in Oxford University during 1969 and 1970, it features the Shadow Faculty of Gastronomic Science; the members of which are all Fellows of St Jerome’s College. Devoted to their dinners, to which they expand enormous effort, the Society suffer a setback when Takeshi Tokoro, guest of one of the founding members, Dr Augustus Bloom, dies while eating a dish he helped prepare himself. Enter Dr Ridgeway, the modern Vice-Chancellor, who is determined to have the ‘ridiculous boys’ club’ disbanded. However, the accidental death of the cultural attaché of Japan is nothing compared to the havoc which is about to be wreaked by one of its own members.

Arthur Plantagenet, who has devoted his life to gastronomy, discovers that his love of good food is going to shorten his life. However, far from deciding to cut back on his eating to extend his life, Arthur determines that the group should eat him after his death.... It is fair to say that the other members of the Society are less than thrilled with this suggestion, but events soon get quite out of hand. Pursued by both Dr Ridgeway, the police, ethical worries and a deeply unpleasant and snobbish student who resents not being invited to join, Arthur’s last wish descends into farce. This book is full of wonderfully eccentric characters, a delightful academic setting, ghosts who play Bach and some serious perusals of recipes which will either make your mouth water or make you feel slightly squeamish. This is an original and deeply humorous novel. I was saddened, by the end, to say goodbye to the characters who peopled these pages and I know it will be a book I will come back to and revisit. Highly recommended.
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