Book : The Hundred Foot Journey (2010)
Author: Richard C. Morais
Genre : General/Drama
Pages : 256
Cost : Rs.75 (Amazon.in)
GR8 Meter: 5.5/8 YES
In about a month’s time, I completed another novel, and this one’s first novel from Richard C. Morais, named “The Hundred Foot Journey”, which is dedicated by the author to his Indian friend Ismail Merchant who was also a film-maker. This novel was published in July 2010, and also had a movie adaptation which was released in 2013. One more novel has been published by the novelist named “Buddhaland Brooklyn”, which seems to go on the same pattern as this one, Richard is the editor of a quarterly magazine Barron’s Penta, also worked earlier for Forbes for 25 years, he’s an american born in portugal & raised in Switzerland. He also one 6 nominations & 3 awards from london-based’Business Journalist of the year awards’. So, now let’s start the review of the book, which I got from Amazon.in for Rs.75.
It is a story of an Indian Muslim family – the Haji Family, and it accounts the life travel of a young-boy-turned-famous 3 star Parisian chef Hassan Haji, how he and his family travels from Bombay to UK to Paris, and what all problems and encounters they faced is what form the crux of this story. His father Abbas Haji aka Big Abbas left for UK, become famous restaurateur in Mumbai, later he loses everything, and then goes to UK, but was unable to initiate any business there, later on he travels on food journeys to get the taste of different cuisines, and later on get settled in a french village Lumiere where he open a restaurant by the name of “Mason Mumbai” just in front of another famous french restaurant “Le Saule Pleureur”, which is ran by a famous lady chef Madam Gertrude Mallory. In starting many problems came to the family, and a rivalry started between the 2 houses, but later on everything settles down, and the boy of the family Hassan, embark on a journey to become the famous 3 star french chef.
The novel is full of poetic references to different kind of foods, esp, the non-veg foods, if you’re a vegan and cannot read the vivid descriptions of various non-veg recipes, you can avoid, the way so many recipes are defined in the book will surely bring sparkle in the eyes of a non-vegan, and they will feel hungry after reading the book. Every here and there various dishes are describes, be it Indian on the French, many situations are explained by comparing them with food and dishes, so, in-a-word the book is delicious(I’m saying this though I’m a vegan, but loved the way of writing here). The language is simple sprinkled with intricate details of food. Storywise, it is something different, though many other books are also there in the market which somehow tracks the life-journey of the main protagonists, but still, this one is a good book to read, esp when you’re lazying around and want to read a light book. The book is not fatty, just about 250-300 odd pages, which can be read in lesser time. This is a good first attempt from the author. The characters are well-etched, you’ll fall in love with some of them like Big Abbas, Hassan & Madam Mallory. It is mix of both worlds – Indian & French. Some french words are also used here and there, it would be good if he also included the english translations for them.
Those who liked reading life-journeys, and lighter books about normal happenings of lives can go for this book, and embark on a delicious and sumptuous meal. OHH sorry. journey.I will rate it as 5.5/8.
Jai Raam ji ki:)