4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
All delicious and disturbing and just a little bit rotten, like a really good Stilton,
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This review is from: The Reluctant Cannibals (Paperback)
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.