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Sweet Honey, Bitter Lemons: Travels in Sicily on a Vespa
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Sweet Honey, Bitter Lemons: Travels in Sicily on a Vespa

3.37 of 5 stars 3.37  ·  rating details  ·  107 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Replete with authentic Siclian recipes culled directly from the out of the way island stoves and cafe kitchens that cook them, Sweet Honey, Bitter Lemons presents a travelogue for seasoned travelers, and lovers of all things Italian.

At the age of twenty-six Matthew Fort first visited the island of Sicily. He and his brother arrived in 1973 expecting sun, sea and good food,
ebook, 352 pages
Published April 28th 2009 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published April 3rd 2008)
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He's a very fun writer who, because he knows Italian, get to give a close up look at people in Italy (in this case Sicily) who are involved in food, from producing to cooking to selling on the street. Very mouth watering.
While it's a generally nice read, the writing just doesn't flow. Here's an example paragraph:

"What makes penne streaked with a sauce of tomato and pork so satisfying? Could there be anything more straightforward? Well, yes, there probably could be, but you could never have said this was a fancy dish. Yet it was fabulously pleasing on so many levels." (p. 101).

What dish is he talking about? You don't know reading this review, and I didn't know when I was reading the book. This is typical of his w
June Seghni
I adored this had wonderful descriptions of the places the writer visited as he pootled around Sicily on his scooter; the people he met, and the superabundance of wonderful food.I don't eat pork or take alcohol, so wouldn't eat many of the dishes he came upon , but the fabulous writing still hooked me..and made me wish I was there... Add to that a dash of history as he describes all the influences that have made Sicily the unique place it is.. thoroughly enjoyed it..
This book looked very promising, very exciting on the library shelf. Sounded absolutely wonderful. Alas, the book itself fell short of expectations. The narrative didn't capture my imagination like some other travelogues did, and sadly, neither did the recipes excite me. Sigh!
This book is good for a cursory look at Sicily, but I would expect more from an author who has been a food writer for the Guardian for more than 10 years. He seemed to be going through the motions of writing a book about traveling around Sicily on a Vespa and I was neither engaged in his plight nor satisfied with his descriptions of the food. I finished it quickly, before my own trip to Sicily and I think that's the only way and time to read this book.
Despite its interesting title and premise this book was a huge disappointment. A completely inadequate tribute to Sicily, Frost hones in on the food and delves some into the culture and history. Perhaps the only positive of this book are the recpies that Frost includes at the end of each chapter. Although Frost discussions of local food and its history are informative, his descriptions are uninspiring and tedious to read after a while.
Jenny (Reading Envy)
An entire book focusing on the food of Sicily. Is there really enough to talk about? Clearly! Matthew Fort is a well-known food writer in the UK, and I enjoyed his descriptions of the landscape and the food, particularly the historical bits of which cultures and empires different foods come from. I wish there had been more pictures, and that they had converted the recipes into American-friendly measurements. :)
This is OK but not hugely enthralling. There is some sense of place but it mostly seems to be about his own gluttony and vignettes of random people he meets. Most of the food sounds absolutely disgusting, though he raves about it. Intestines. Lungs. There is a LOT of octopus.
It is an easy read. Didn't love it; didn't hate it.
Enjoyable book (liked it better than his travels through Italy), but would probably enjoy it more if I spoke Italian (or even had a passing knowledge of it), or if I had been to Sicily. Still, well written, some fun travel tales, and a few quite interesting recipes. My copy is now dogeared...
What a treat to read Matthew Fort's book before & while traveling in Sicily! No, I'm not on a Vespa, but it feels like he is keeping me company, making me more knowledgeable & eager for more contact with Sicily' s people & places.
Sophie James
I really fell into this book and haven't yet emerged. He really helps you understand that food is history on a plate. Some lovely writing. All I want to do is reread it. Lovely recipes too.
Pam Strayer
At least twice as interesting as I had thought it would be before I got it...darling book. The only trouble is you will be tempted to eat Sicilian food.
Martha Fiorentini
I was hoping for more ambience like I found in "Under the Tuscan Sun." I don't feel that this author did justice to Sicily which I have visited years ago.
He travels through Sicily on a Vespa. Some fun parts but not as good as his prior book Eating Up Italy.
Saturday's Child
This book has wet my appetite for travel in Sicily.
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