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The Gastronomical Me by M. F. K. Fisher

The Gastronomical Me

by M. F. K. Fisher

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Art of Eating

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4631434,105 (4.12)27



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» See also 27 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Autobiographical anecdotes cover the years 1912-1941. Some are fanciful and some are extremely sad. The food detail is always amazing and interesting and I was tickled to note that airline food was bad in 1941 also...
(November 01, 2006) ( )
  cindywho | May 27, 2019 |
This is a series of essays written about Fisher's life between 1912 and 1941. She covers a wide range of topics; from the first time food became significant to her as a teenager in boarding school to her adventures as a newly married wife living in France. When she said goodbye to her Californian-American palate and encountered French cuisine it was like having an epiphany for Fisher. Her ears (and taste buds) were open to a whole new way of experiencing food and drink. Sprinkled throughout the stories are glimpses of Fisher's personal history. Her relationship with sister Norah and brother David, the demise of her first marriage with Al, the slow death of her second love, Chexbres, and her awakening to a different culture in Mexico. ( )
  SeriousGrace | Nov 14, 2017 |
good memoir, not telling us everything but that's what the internet is for.
"fisher builds a life from meals" ( )
  mahallett | Aug 15, 2015 |
Didn't get to it
  Lisa02476 | Apr 12, 2014 |
Really great book. The first few chapters and the last few, especially, were absolutely wonderful. Which is not to say that it drug in the middle—it really didn't. If it had all been as good as those chapters on either end, it would have been a nearly perfect book. Still, I loved it as it was.

The book is a memoir, told almost exclusively through descriptions of food, eating, etc. In case you're not familiar with MFK Fisher, that's the kind of writing she does—it's about food, but it's about so much more. I guess you could say (and in fact she does say at several points) that she's speaking also about metaphorical hunger. True enough, but still it doesn't at all capture the work. She's talking about what it means to grow up, to become yourself, to fall in love and back out again (and back one more time), to be a woman, to travel, to survive a spouse, even what it means to live in a world on the brink of war (the memoir covers her life from 1912–1941). And other things besides, but those are the ones that come to mind at the moment. And along the way, she has plenty to say about the food.

I loved the book. I've also found myself quite a bit hungrier as I've read it, of course. :) That part's not going to go away. I read it for an online book group, alongside Ruth Reichl's Garlic & Sapphires (which I also enjoyed, though not as much as this one). ( )
  spoko | Nov 14, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Fisher, M. F. K.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Buckley, LynnCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The first thing I remember tasting and then wanting to taste again is the grayish-pink fuzz my grandmother skimmed from a spitting kettle of strawberry jam.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0865473927, Paperback)

M. F. K. Fisher sees life stomach first. The New York Times said "She spit Puritan restraint out like a dull wine and made a life of savoring the slow, sensual pleasures of the table." And between meals, she savored the pleasures of men and travel, too. She recalls California in 1912, life in France in the 1930s, and traveling solo to Mexico in 1941. Her first oyster is a beautiful story, about adolescence and the glory of the briny mollusk, and her humor is as forthright as her taste at table.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:23 -0400)

The Gastronomical Me is a chronicle of the authors passionate embrace of a whole new way of eating, drinking, and celebrating the senses. As she recounts memorable meals shared with an assortment of eccentric and fascinating characters, set against a backdrop of mounting pre-war tensions, we witness the formation not only of her taste but of her character and her prodigious talent.… (more)

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