Sunday, February 17, 2013

Book Review

Fresh off the Boat
by Eddie Huang

I was really excited about this book.  First, because I love memoirs; second, I love food; and third, I ate at Eddie Huang's Baohaus in NYC last fall.  Unfortunately, I was mostly disappointed by this book. 

Eddie's still fairly young, so the great majority (about 90%) of the story details his childhood growing up in a mostly white Florida town.  There were some AMAZING food descriptions, and it's clear that Eddie was born a chef.  As a child, his taste buds noticed more subtle flavors and spices than most adults' can.  He says at one point that he has hardly any memories of his life that aren't associated with a type of food, and I can believe it.  This was obviously his calling, and his memoir shows that.

However, the story-telling throughout the book is really broken up.  He'll start off describing one event that leads into another that leads into a detail about rap music or shoes.  Several pages later you realized that the reason you're feeling like you forgot something is because he never finished that first event.  There's also a lot of unnecessary dialogue.

He doesn't start talking about Baohaus until the very end of the book, where it only takes up about a chapter and a half.  Eddie's journey is very inspiring, but the telling of it is not very well organized.

Read more reviews for this book on LibraryThing.

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