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Book Report: The Food Taster

I think my Best Reader picked up The Food Taster at a library book sale, judging it on its cover, as all right-thinking people do. Then it went on the read-this-sometime shelf, and eventually she did read it, and enjoyed it, and suggested that Your Humble Blogger read it, too. So I put it on the read-this-sometime shelf.

Eventually, I did read it, and I enjoyed it, too. Historical novel, jokes and rudeness and obnoxiousness and danger and lots and lots of poison. What’s not to like?

Well, there is the thing where Our Hero is an astonishingly modern-minded man in a pre-modern world. He starts out, of course, not only pious but superstitious, but his transformation into a scientist is quick and thorough, and after that, nobody can fool our man. He’s a liberated thinker, our man is, and blah blah blah blah. It’s an irritating thing that happens too often in historical novels.

On the other hand, having one or two Sources of Reader Annoyance is not unusual in Books I Like (otherwise known as good books). This has that one, and the one where all the action takes place in a foreign place and a foreign tongue, but only a handful of words are not translated into English. In this case, it’s rude words, if I remember correctly, which at least has some reason, even if it’s far more irritating than the use of asshole or cock would be. Oh, the earthiness.

So there are a couple of things not to like, but there are many more that are fun and enjoyable, silly or clever or outrageous or even suspenseful. So that’s all right.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,
-Vardibidian.