Book Review: The Cook by Maylis de Kerangal

The Cook  by Maylis de Kerangal (translated by Sam Taylor) is a fictional biography of Mauro, a young man who dreams of working as a cook / chef. Ms. de Kerangal is a prize winning French author.


  • 112 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (March 26, 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374120900

Buy The Cook from*My rating for The Cook – 4
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If I learned anything from The Cook  by Maylis de Kerangal (translated by Sam Taylor) is that I never want to work in a kitchen. I do enjoy cooking and baking breads, but I never had the desire to punish myself as a professional in that industry.

This is a short book, a fast read, but very lyrical and imaginative. Mauro, the subject of this book, loves to cook and tries to find himself through various cuisines throughout the world. Even venturing into opening his own restaurant.

Mauro’s life is intense, always a struggle in a fast paced world which he thrives on. Unlike many in his line of work, Maruro does not take it lightly when being humiliated and has the confidence and ability to simply walk out on when being abused.

The dedication which is needed to become a chef is something which I always found admirable, and a bit crazy as well. The hospitality industry can be unforgiving, at best and it takes a committed, hardworking, and a diligent person to be successful in it.

Mauro always wanted to cook, he loves food and the process to make it edible. Over fifteen years Mauro works all over the world, Paris, Thailand, Burma and more honing his craft.

The story, told through the eyes of a friend, follows Mauro from childhood where he bakes cakes, to his teen age years, his jobs in the industry and a nervous breakdown. The friend, in love with Mauro, documents these events in vivid detail.

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Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer: I got this book for free.
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account



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