Grant Sanders's Reviews > Yes, Chef: A Memoir

Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson
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's review
Aug 17, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: favorite-non-fiction-mémoire
Read from August 07 to 17, 2012

I'm an audiobook fiend. And this book, read by the author, is a treasure if you can get over the fact that his reading, in parts, is a little, for lack of a better word, clunky. You have to cut the author some slack, as English is just one of many languages he speaks, his native tongue being Swedish.

This book is full of wonderful descriptions of food, and if one is familiar with the ingredients and has a strong sense memory, one can almost taste the food being served.

Mr. Sameulsson's story is compelling and message-driven. At the beginning, I was a little annoyed at his attempt to turn his story into one about race. (Race issues in the 90s? Really?) But in the end, the totality of his experiences, especially his work in Harlem, did justify the tack he took. After all, a memoir is told through the eyes of the author. If he felt it, it must be true. By the end, I had no doubt that race played a role in his development as a chef, a businessman, a father and a son.

Ultimately, for me, I got a wonderful sense of how the Chef grew as a man. And the arc of the book does end on a high and positive note. But for me, the audiobook alone was worth the experience just to hear the author read the word, "lemongrass."

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