As Meat Loves Salt
A sensational tale of obsession and murder from a wonderful writer. ‘An outstanding novel, fresh and unusual [with] all the dirt, stink, rasp and flavour of the time.’ Daily Telegraph
‘Early in the English Civil War, a body is dredged from the pond of a Royalist estate. “As Meat Loves Salt” is the testament of Jacob Cullen – homicide and fugitive. Obsessed with the graceful...more
1a. IT IS BRILLIANT.
1b. EVERYONE IN IT IS EXTREMELY FUCKED UP.
1c. It's gonna wear you out.
2. As Meat Loves Salt is a dark, brutal, intelligent, and moving novel. If you could write Caravaggio down, it would be this book. (Interestingly, it has a lot in common with Jarman's movie too - and for reasons other than obsessive erotic fixations with beautiful blond men!) It is beautiful and frightening - terrifying, in some p ...more
As Meat Loves Salt is many things: a thrilling historical novel of the 17th century English revolution; a darkly-hued psychodram ...more
This damn author has this wicked ability to warp my numb ass right back in time so that I felt like I was there watching the scenes unfold instead of simply reading the scenes.
Oh and let me tell you the scenes I was watching were not of the fluffy bunny type. No, they were of the Ted Bundy type. Here is the most twisted revelati ...more
The anti-hero of this novel spends most of his life struggling with his inner self. At the start of the novel Jacob Cullen seems a perfectly ordinary young man about to marry his sweetheart, and then wham!
In the next part of the novel Jacob is fighting in the English Civil War on the side of the Roundheads. It is here that Jacob meets the love of his life and where we get to know him better. A large muscular man, ...more
”On the morning we dragged the pond for Patience White, I bent so far down trying to see beneath the surface that my own face peered up at me, twisted and frowning.”
It immediately sets the gruesome scene, and is the first peek into a dark mind. Maria McCann has such a gift for writing. I feel like I didn't so much read this boo ...more
I am currently reading Ace, King, Knave by Maria McCann, and unfortunately I can't help but compare it to this first of her books that I read, which I'm not sure I will ever get over. I wish I had been a Goodreads member when I read it, so that I would have had a reason to write down my thoughts on paper. I remember it being on my mind for days, probably weeks after I finished it, and it still haunts me.
As well as being one of the best examples of realistic, gorge ...more
Actually, this was much better than that piece of tortured fluff Call Me by Your Name. For one thing, there's no masturbation-with-a-ripe-peach scene. Other than the sheer cheesiness of that, if you've ever held a squishy ripe peach in your hand, you'll know that the end result of that will be smeary peach pulp and not two neat halves that can be assembled back together lik ...more
The lovers are two halves of a coin, light and dark, one as honest and easy to read as the other is secretive and Machiavellian – or are they? Because there’s a cruel twist that had me aching and an end that made me cry half the night (and that ...more
I was aware that the book was making me sad whilst I was reading it but I realised just how much when at the moment of finishing it I felt like a load had been lifted off my chest, I felt lighter, a ray of light touching me at the thought that I did not have to touch that world again. A world where hope does not exist. Where Ms McCann makes sure that no ray of sunshine is left.
This story left me questioning what I've just read that is what I will take with me. A story unreliably told by Jacob so ...more
This is a very clever book, in a lot of ways. It’ ...more
After seeming to escape a troubled past, he falls in love with a fellow warrior, who passionately accepts and teaches him of the love between men, yet their own obsessive behavior threatens to destory everyt ...more
McCann is a very talented writer as she brings the 17th century vividly to life yet never overloads you with details and descrip ...more
Violent love eats up what it does love, and is mere appetite.
If someone had asked me ten days ago (when I finished reading) if they should read this book, I’m pretty sure my answer would have been: no. Because, for me, what it came down to was that this book was almost 600 pages of misery, torment, and gloom which eventually led to an ending that left me not only emotionally drained but in angry tears. I can count on my fingers the moments the two main characters experienced happiness or joy, ...more
Gorgeous historical, beautifully written which, nonetheless, felt angry towards homosexuals. Or, perhaps, men.
The main character is a brutal narcissist. I tried to find a metaphor to explain his behavior, thinking that perhaps he represented the old bourgeois?
There is neither redemption or consolation for the characters or the reader. The main character is filled with remorse but who know ...more
I loved and hated this novel at the same time. The back cover says that this is a dark erotic (nothing too graphic and not that much either) tale but it really is so much more. McCann weaves the dark and violent with sweet and innocent brilliantly.
Born into nobility, Jacob Cullen was reduced to servant status after his father died. Years later he, and his two brothers, are living relatively comfortably as house servants. Jacob is also about to be wedded to a woman he loves. However ...more
It’s also been a long time since anything I’ve read affected me so much—the last few pages brought on a curious kind of devastation I’ve yet to process, and the hundreds that came before dragged me through the muck and mire, the highs and lows and everything in between, that usually foreshadow such devastation.
I started this on A ...more
On its surface, McCann’s novel is merely a love story, or perhaps a story of sexual obsession. And it will certainly reward anyone who chooses to read it on that level alone. It is, after all, an emotional ...more
I picked it up after it was recommended on some m/m list, and indeed the relationship between the two men is at the heart of the book. But it is not a happy romance, no, far from it. But it was breathtaking to read - I don't recall ever readi ...more
Well, I have to give it some credit, for the excruciatingly accurate portrayal of the time period, as well as the last fifty pages that sped past like a fevered nightmare. And also the unconventional ending. But damn. Jacob just doesn't know when to stop. His violence is so inherent it's almost lost between the lines if you read too quickly; he shifts from straightforward observation to murderous imaginings and back again in the blink of an eye. At least the prose was direct and not too col ...more
Her first novel, As Meat Loves Salt, was released in 2001. The story focuses on the relationship of two men, Jacob Cullen and Christopher Ferris, and is set during the English Civil War. They desert their posts in ...more