HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Chef's Apprentice by Elle Newmark
Loading...

The Chef's Apprentice (2011)

by Elle Newmark

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4965820,596 (3.66)55
  1. 00
    Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb (mene)
    mene: Both books have a similar setting: Told by a narrator when he is already old and has lived his life, he talks about his childhood. Both main characters lived in the "important building" of the city (though in Assassin's Apprentice it's a fantasy world and in The Book of Unholy Mischief it's Venice in Italy), both boys go to town every now and then to meet his friends (and a girl), and both are apprentices of someone/something they cannot tell anyone else (except for a few people). Both books contain a bit of magic, though of a different kind.… (more)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 55 mentions

English (56)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  All (58)
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
Questo romanzo mi aveva incuriosita per la sua ambientazione in una cucina del tardo Quattrocento Veneziano, e in particolare quella del Doge: speravo di trovare quell'atmosfera vivace e quasi magica che la storia dell'arte che sto studiando mi porta a immaginare, condita da ricette di un tempo passato su un sottofondo di chiacchiere e ordini da cucina.
Ammetto di essere arrivata all'ultima pagina con un pizzico di delusione, legata comunque alle mie aspettative: di vita veneziana c'è meno di quanto mi sarei aspettata, di cucina ancora meno, e la trama stessa prende una piega insolita.
I cuochi come depositari di conoscenze da tenere segrete e tramandare fino a quando sarà giunto il momento propizio mi fa tanto Codice da Vinci; i "buoni" sono fin troppo teneri, riuscendo poco credibili per il periodo storico in questione; i "cattivi" non sono nulla di più che le solite macchiette scontate, prevedibili quanto fastidiosi.
La narrazione vive alti e bassi, con parti avvincenti e altre più lente e noiose.
Luciano sembra una marionetta nelle mani degli altri personaggi: tonto e ingenuo con il capocuoco, insicuro con l'amico di strada Marco, svenevole quando ha a che fare con la sua amata Francesca.
Amato Ferrero è una presenza sfuggente, che non sono riuscita a inquadrare: talvolta paterno all'inverosimile, talvolta incline a un perdono che ha del surreale; descritto come uomo di polso temibile, lo è solo nella parole dell'autrice.
Marco, nonostante sia uno dei personaggi più antipatici, è forse il più riuscito: ragazzo di strada, abbandonato dalla madre che non poteva mantenerlo, vive con la speranza di ritrovare la sorella e portarla nel Nuovo Mondo. Nella sua fede condita da ingenuità per un futuro migliore, che sarà tale solo grazie al misterioso libro che tutti vogliono, arriva a tiri mancini nei confronti dell'amico Luciano: la sua gelosia è genuina, la sua invidia ben motivata, la sua temerarietà segue gli impulsi del momento e del cuore.
Il meccanismo di intrighi tra Venezia e Roma, e tra il potere veneziano stesso contro il Doge fa da legante alle vicende narrate, ma finisce in una nuvola di fumo che rivela non essere sostenuta da null'altro che un mistero per nulla speciale. Sembra che l'autrice abbia tentato un improbabile equilibrio a metà tra verità storica e fantasia, senza però riuscire convincente.
Qualche pecca la si trova anche nei termini più tecnici, come per esempio "gotico", entrato nell'uso comune solo nel secolo successivo alle vicende narrate in prima persona da Luciano.
La lettura è proseguita a singhiozzo e con un po' di fatica, alleviata da sprazzi di vivacità e di imprevisto: mi è piaciuto il modo di intitolare i capitoli, come "Il libro di...", che richiama il vero protagonista del romanzo, Il Libro, scorto solamente tra le ombre della cucina e le pieghe di un mantello.
Il fatto che ci abbia impiegato quasi un mese a leggerlo, conoscendomi, la dice lunga. ( )
  LaPizia | Aug 3, 2017 |
Set in Venice during the final years of the fifteenth century, The Book of Unholy Mischief by Elle Newmark paints a very vivid picture of that city at the height of it’s power, full of political intrigue, secrets and gossip. As the book opens the city is aflame with the rumour of a very special book hidden somewhere within the city. This book is said to hold the secrets of the ancient alchemists of Byzantium, including recipes for the making of gold, a powerful love potion and a prescription for immortality.

The story is told by Luciano who starts life as a penniless orphan, a street smart boy who has been chosen to be the apprentice of the doge’s head chef. Luciano has learned the art of spying on people and it isn’t too long before he too is caught up in the quest for the mysterious book. The chef tries to instill in Luciano an appreciation for how food can manipulate men’s hearts and minds, but the real message of this book seems to be that ultimate power comes from the magic of knowledge.

I was excited about The Book of Unholy Magic but unfortunately the plot was extremely slow moving with many loose ends left dangling. Although I wasn’t totally drawn into the mystery part of the book, the author’s development of the rich atmosphere of this fascinating city and her mouthwatering
descriptions of the food preparation kept me involved in the story. ( )
  DeltaQueen50 | Feb 6, 2017 |
This is an unusually fun romp thru Renaissance Venice, during the time of Pope Alexander VI, the Borgia Pope.
A good read! ( )
  winterslights | Jun 12, 2016 |
The Book of Unholy Mischief – Elle Newmark n. Raul Esparza
4 stars

In 1498 a Venetian street boy secures a position as an apprentice in the kitchen of the doge. In time he comes to understand that he is not only apprenticed to become a master cook but also to become one of the mysterious Guardians of The Book. The Guardians strive to preserve and protect the accumulated knowledge of centuries. It is the dawn of the Renaissance and a time of great political intrigue and corruption.
From the first gripping chapter, this story drew me in completely. I could smell the food cooking. I wanted to reach in to prevent disaster.
Like The DaVinci Code, this book deals with corruption within the Catholic Church and with a different interpretation of the Gospels. There is little doubt of the historical truth of the blatant corruption of the Borgia Pope but other assertions of the story might be offensive to some people. I had no trouble accepting the book as a work of fiction and enjoying the well plotted suspense.

I first listened to this book. I liked Raul Esparza’s performance, but found that sometimes he read too rapidly.
I found the author’s notes at the end of the hard copy to be very interesting.

( )
  msjudy | May 30, 2016 |
The audiobook is so well read that I was immediately sucked in to the story. The story itself is quite interesting especially for anyone who has more than a passing interest to the sorted past of Christianity/Catholicism. ( )
  kristina_brooke | Apr 15, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elle Newmarkprimary authorall editionscalculated
Esparza, RaúlNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
If I have seen further (than other men), it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.
Sir Isaac Newton
Dedication
For the teachers
First words
My name is Luciano--just Luciano
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
It is 1498, and the whole of Venice is abuzz. Hidden somewhere in the labyrinthine city is an ancient book, rumored to contain thorny heresies and secrets of immeasurable power. Luciano, a penniless orphan, has been plucked from the street and taken on as apprentice to the chef at the doge's palace. While learning the alchemy of cooking, he quickly finds himself entangled in the search for the ancient tome, even suspecting the chef, his maestro, may be concealing valuable information. But lurking in the wings are some of the most powerful, dangerous men in Venice, and Luciano's secret will lead him through a perilous maze to the center of an intrigue that will test his deepest desires and loyalties.

Originally published as "Bones of the Dead".
Venetië, 1498. In de stad en daarbuiten gonst het van de geruchten over een oud en mysterieus boek dat een onvoorstelbaar machtige invloed heeft. Er zouden recepten in staan voor onder andere goud, onsterfelijkheid en eeuwige liefde. Iedereen, rijk en arm, fluistert en droomt erover. In deze roerige tijden, op de drempel van de renaissance, groeit de wees Luciano op straat op. Hij wordt door de chef-kok van de paleiskeuken gesnapt bij het stelen van een granaatappel. De kok ontfermt zich over de jongen en biedt hem onderdak en voedsel aan, in ruil voor hulp in de keuken. Luciano komt in een geheel nieuwe, aromatische en verleidelijke wereld van vreemde kruiden, een weelde aan voedsel en de geheimen van de chef-kok. Zijn loyaliteit aan zijn straatvrienden, zijn liefde voor een kloostermeisje en de mysterieuze recepten van zijn leermeester, roepen verlangens in hem op die ook hem ertoe aanzetten op zoek te gaan naar het boek. Hij blijkt dichter op de waarheid te zitten dan hij voor mogelijk had gehouden... met alle gevolgen van dien.

Debutante op leeftijd Newmark schetst een overtuigend, geurig en fascinerend beeld van het wrede en machtige Venetië anno 1498. De stad is in rep en roer om een geheimzinnig boek. In de keuken van het Dogepaleis worstelt de weesjongen Luciano met zijn geweten. Zijn kennis is levensgevaarlijk, maar of hij dat op tijd beseft?
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

(see all 2 descriptions)

Taking a job as a chef's apprentice at the palace of the doge, late-fifteenth-century Venice street orphan Luciano becomes increasingly suspicious about his master's shadowy past and learns about an ancient book containing a dangerous power.

» see all 7 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
26 avail.
44 wanted
1 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.66)
0.5 1
1 4
1.5
2 6
2.5 5
3 40
3.5 18
4 46
4.5 6
5 28

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 118,645,734 books! | Top bar: Always visible