Tuesday, February 22, 2011

January Book Review: Medium Raw by Anthony Bourdain

I love Anthony Bourdain. I want to be Anthony Bourdain. Imagine: travel around the world with some TV cameras following you, meet fascinating people, eat incredible food. And write books. Great books. Usually.

I read my Dad's copy of "Medium Raw" while I was in Barbados over Christmas. Having read "Kitchen Confidential" at the end of last year, and really enjoyed it, I had high hopes for "Medium Raw." Which were dashed.

Reasons I loved "Kitchen Confidential":
- it was funny
- it offered true insight into the restaurant world, a world I frequent a few times a week
- it offered true insight into who Anthony Bourdain really is
- Mr. Bourdain used his usual colorful language throughout, but it didn't detract from the book

Reasons I didn't like "Medium Raw":
- it flowed horribly - each chapter was its own story
- Mr. Bourdain's colorful language showed up every two words on the page. It detracted from the book.
- it offered no insight into the restaurant/TV/cooking/celebrity chef industry, but instead offered a forum for his rants, raves and otherwise meaningless blabber.

Okay, maybe that last bullet was a little harsh. But, plain and simple, the writing was just not up to par in this book. I love a good story. I love books that I can get lost in, and read 50 pages without even realizing it. I love Anthony Bourdain in person, on TV, at Les Halles, and in his other books. I just didn't love him in this one.

No comments: