Jeanette "Astute Crabbist"'s Reviews > Salt: A World History

Salt by Mark Kurlansky
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Sep 29, 11

really liked it
bookshelves: books-about-food, cultural-and-social-commentary, four-star-nonfiction, history, nonfiction, science, audio
Read in September, 2011

Well, I'll be pickled!
We say we'll take something with a grain of salt as if it's nothing, but much of the history of the world is tied up in the quest for salt. It's not nothing. We're fortunate to have it in such abundance that we can take it for granted and worry about getting too much of it in our diets. For most of human existence that was not the case.

The material here is thorough and often fascinating, but you must have a strong interest in history if you hope to get through it. Had I tried to read it in print rather than listening to the audio book, I may not have stayed with it. It's quite thoroughly thorough, right down to ancient and modern recipes for salty foods that sound mighty revolting.

The quality and style of presentation in the book is similar to Bill Bryson's, but without the humor. It's hard to believe this was written by the same guy that put together that goofy book made up of nothing but questions.
19 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Salt.
Sign In »

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Judy (new) - added it

Judy This does sound interesting. But like you, I don't know if I could make it through reading a book vs. listening to a cd. Good topic. Makes sense about the salt quests though because of preservation needs.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Excellent research and well written, it's just so dang long. I think it was 14 CDs! Amazing how many other uses there are for salt besides preservation. I think you should definitely give it a listen.

message 3: by Judy (new) - added it

Judy I will. Sounds like something for this winter when I'm on one of my all-day sewing sprees.

Steven Interesting read. While I found the book informative, it did take some extra effort to get through parts. The author names lots of locations, which made it difficult to follow. I felt like I was mining through information looking to find the bits of hidden gold. While found, I am not so sure the return on the effort was worth it.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Had I read the print version, I might have felt the way you do, Steven. Audio's nice because you can half-listen through the boring stuff. I thought it was worth it for me just because I had never known how much of world history was tied up in the quest for salt.

back to top