Sam's Reviews > Yes, Chef

Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson
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's review
Jun 28, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: memoir, nonfiction, first-reads, can-t-wait-to-read, celebrity
Recommended to Sam by: saw it on goodreads
Recommended for: aspiring chefs, Marcus Samuelsson fans, and foodies
Read from July 14 to August 10, 2012 , read count: 1


I'm a big fan of Marcus Samuelsson's work on TV and in his books. But I never knew his story so I was eager to read this book.

This book is written in 3 parts. The first part of the book was about Marcus's upbringing and felt a bit raw to me. Perhaps this could be because this was the pre-release edition and that section hadn't been edited yet but, although I found the story interesting, I didn't particularly enjoy the writing in that section. It just felt a little rushed to me. I needed it to be slower and more story driven. I wanted to know more about the food that influenced this chef growing up. I wanted to hear more about his grandmother, Helga, who he says was such a big influence in his life.

The writing style changed when I got to parts 2 and 3. The writing got significantly better, so much so that I COULDN'T PUT THE BOOK DOWN and read the rest of it in a couple of days. I really enjoyed Samuelsson's story. It truly is a story that needed to be told because it is so unique and also, inspirational. Samuelsson is an example of someone achieving the "American dream" through hard work. Furthermore, Samuelsson's story is honest, he doesn't sugar-coat his career or his actions in life and because of that I learned so much from him about life and about the restaurant business, and how one of the best chefs of our time gets inspired.

Most of all, Samuelsson is human. He has also made mistakes in life too. One message I learned from this book is that you don't have to be perfect to be great, just aspire to greatness and live your passion, your dream. Although, I believe it's always good to strive for perfection both in life and in art!

I found it an incredibly DELICIOUS read!

Strongly recommended to aspiring chefs, Marcus Samuelsson fans, and foodies!

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Reading Progress

07/15/2012 "So excited to get this in the mail!"
07/16/2012 page 56
17.0% "Marcus Samuelsson is the quintessential celebrity chef. It's cool and inspiring to read about his humble beginnings. He's had quite an interesting life."
08/04/2012 page 97
30.0% "Why is it taking me so long to get through this book?

The story is interesting... But the writing is not so good."
08/07/2012 page 97
30.0% "Getting a little more interesting. I think the problem with the earlier part of the book is that it lacked conflict and was written too matter-of-fact-like instead of story-like. However, the conflict in this part of the book can not be avoided."
08/07/2012 page 163
51.0% "The book has gotten 100 times better. I loved the New York chapter and everything after that. It was like a different person wrote the beginning. Before I couldn't keep reading and now I can't put it down. Weird."
08/08/2012 page 163
51.0% "Interesting insights into the food industry. 1. I agree that ethnic food should not be looked down upon but actually enriches the quality of the food. 2. French is not the end-all of cuisine. 3. I didn't know the atmosphere in the kitchen could be so intense!"
08/09/2012 page 298
93.0% "I might finish this tonight! Yay! LOVE curling up with a good book before I go to sleep :)."
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