[ Free eBook ] The Reluctant Cannibals Author Ian Flitcroft – Sharkmotorcyclehelmets.co.uk

When A Group Of Food Obsessed Academics At Oxford University Form A Secret Dining Society, They Happily Devote Themselves To Investigating Exotic And Forgotten Culinary Treasures Until A Dish Is Suggested That Takes Them All By Surprise Professor Arthur Plantagenet Has Been Told He Has A Serious Heart Problem And Decides That His Death Should Not Be In Vain He Sets Out His Bizarre Plan In A Will, That On His Death, Tests The Loyalty Of His Closest Friends, The Remaining Members Of This Exclusive Dining Society A Dead Japanese Diplomat, Police Arrests And Charges Of Grave Robbing These Are Just Some Of The Challenges These Culinary Explorers Must Overcome In Tackling Gastronomy S Ultimate Taboo Cannibalism I adored every second I spent reading this dark comedy about a secret Oxford dining club, knownfor losing its members and guests to extreme pushing of gastronomic boundaries, than for the excellence of its unusual menus What a bloody marvellous way to die opines a member, still seated at the table with the corpse cooling nearby The tale is very Tom Sharpe but the comedy is less obvious, the style crisper, sharper, the writing and I say this as a huge fan of TS better, with foody descriptionlushly lavish than a truffled turkey The characterisation is a particular delight the comedy has a light touch the plot is deliciously detailed, delightfully strange I read it in 3 days, never wanted to put it down and was incredibly sorry when it ended. This debut novel is darkly and deliciously disturbing Set in Oxford University during 1969 and 1970, it features the Shadow Faculty of Gastronomic Science the members of which are all Fellows of St Jerome s College Devoted to their dinners, to which they expand enormous effort, the Society suffer a setback when Takeshi Tokoro, guest of one of the founding members, Dr Augustus Bloom, dies while eating a dish he helped prepare himself Enter Dr Ridgeway, the modern Vice Chancellor, who is determined to have the ridiculous boys club disbanded However, the accidental death of the cultural attach of Japan is nothing compared to the havoc which is about to be wreaked by one of its own members.Arthur Plantagenet, who has devoted his life to gastronomy, discovers that his love of good food is going to shorten his life However, far from deciding to cut back on his eating to extend his life, Arthur determines that the group should eat him after his death It is fair to say that the other members of the Society are less than thrilled with this suggestion, but events soon get quite out of hand Pursued by both Dr Ridgeway, the police, ethical worries and a deeply unpleasant and snobbish student who resents not being invited to join, Arthur s last wish descends into farce This book is full of wonderfully eccentric characters, a delightful academic setting, ghosts who play Bach and some serious perusals of recipes which will either make your mouth water or make you feel slightly squeamish This is an original and deeply humorous novel I was saddened, by the end, to say goodbye to the characters who peopled these pages and I know it will be a book I will come back to and revisit Highly recommended. A jolly group of Oxford dons sets up a taboo shattering secret dining society in this surprisingly delightful debut Cannibalism or anthropophagy, as one character prefers to call it might seem a morbid subject, but in Flitcroft s light hearted treatment, the absurdity of the situation will have the reader celebrating English eccentricity at its finest There is no Hannibal Lecter gruesomeness here, only good hud collegiate fun See my full review at The Bookbag The Reluctant Cannibal is a witty song by Flanders Swann that also inspired Malcolm Bradbury s Eating People is Wrong.I will seek outfrom Legend Press an independent UK publisher , and eagerly await Flitcroft s next novel He also promises a short story collection with topics ranging from a lobster in love with a young girl and an oyster s perspective on being eaten, to the girl who died because she didn t eat enough cup cakes Sounds delicious. Ommm nomm nomm GoodReads, because this book was fantastic and so few have read it, this round of review comes to you as well, your buggery be damned for now Also FYI, I prefer making lists, unless I plan to bullshit you.I am a picky, spoiled eater I bet there arefood items in the culinary world that I d rather not eat as opposed to the one I deign to smell Methinks my relationship with chow support is like the consternating one with pretty clothes or men you pick Everything s so effing appealing on the big screen or in books, but there are aspecialemphasized in every way possible to my knowledge few that retain their charm when I have to wear or engage with them But then I m a bitch and ignore strangers to very rude degrees, so I have few clues on the rules of engagement that could perhaps make itfun But then I guess that is a desirable quality that parents drum into their young creepsters But I can really be a bitch too A very quiet one Digressions and tangents aside, there are precisely three reasons fill in the rest cause it s boring typing that out a Anthropophagyy, which will be the politically correct term for cannibalism soon as there are, you know, cannibal rights groups gain the recognition they truly deserve Amen b Shadow with long, uninteresting words like Gastronomic and Faculty and Declining, added belatedly , yet we know it s the shadow that really matters It s a traditional secret society in the way that it has an assortment of some harsh, other eccentric rules c Cultural Diversity ftw Idiot as well as wicked Englishmen my favorite , indignant French and patriotic Irishmen, with a sassy sauce of true Americana who eat and play all day long And..unhhdead Japanese, too Rather indelicate business d The following portion is going to be in paragraph because I m bored of lists It s also going to contain Sherlock gif s because I can t find my gun I liked the polite but cutting humor of the narrative in general It was reminiscent of my history teacher except his contains polite but cutting insults I swear that man can just raise his eyebrows and make you feel like scum of the earth That s called being superhumanSometimes, it s funny in the conventional way, plus witty and dark in the right places not too close to the foods lest the attention be diverted However, the writing gets a tad formal here and there, which almost breaks the flow the of the story But overall, it s a remarkable piece of writing.The book starts with the aforementioned death of a Japanese businessman at a dinner of the the shadow faculty, which raises international concerns about the taste of fugu, brings in an Honorable gentleman, and goes on to tell a tale of reluctant cannibals with other assortments of wackiness, and some seriosity in the ways of grave robbing, and some intellectual conversations as to our Lord Cheeses s cents on cannibalism It s a damn fun book overall with pesky footnotes that didn t quite appeal to me, as they contributed little to the story The characters were charming and the luscious descriptions of food, oh ma Even I, being as untrained and fastidious as I am, had my taste buds trying to jump, Jump, JUMP out of my mouth So yep, I pretty much thought the book was brilliant and would love for others to try it Psstbored with Sherlock travesty Yawning at the review understandable Review copy provided by publishers. As much as I liked the eccentric Oxford dons in this story, it was a very looooooooong story With sometimes boring secondary and tertiary stories.About halfway into the book I would have bailed, but I wanted to know whether the gastronomic society would eat human flesh or not.Shorter story and better editing would have made this a 5 star novel. The Reluctant Cannibals is a delicious tale dripping with gallows humor and British wit It s the zany story of Oxford intelligentsia who devote themselves to the gastronomical pursuit of sampling exotic and exquisite cuisine While academics consuming new foods may seem like a dry topic for a novel, as the name suggest, the plot quickly takes a macabre twist.After Professor Plantagenet is diagnosed with a heart condition due to his years of decadence, he submits a bizarre request to the shadow faculty of gastronomic science one that teaches them just how far they re willing to go in the name of the perfect bite Nothing goes smoothly as they have to deal with curing techniques, student rivalries and arrests for grave robbing And since every boy s club needs a Vernon Wormer, they must also contend with Vice Chancellor Ridgeway whose greatest desire is to see them disbanded.From walls lined with leather bound volumes, to the ghost who haunts the stone cellar, The Reluctant Cannibals has tons of atmosphere and style There sthan enough quirk and black humor on each page to insure no part was a drag The footnotes peppered throughout were an amusing touch, and the history of cannibalism wasinteresting than it should have been.The Reluctant Cannibals is for anyone who enjoys their humor dark, and for the gourmands who will appreciate the references Oh, and of course, for all those determined cannibals out there.What I learned from reading The Reluctant Cannibals The Shingnon monks of Yamagata practiced self mummification while still alive The practice was called Sokushinbutsu which was austerity to the point of their death and mummification Their founder, Kuukai, believed enlightenment could be reached physical pain It took 10 years for them to mummify themselves, and though many tried, only around 2 dozen successful mummies have been found.To begin they consumed only nuts and seeds for 1,000 days while engaging in strenuous physical activity meant to strip them of all body fat.For the next 1,000 days they ate only roots and tree bark and drank a poisonous tea made from the sap of the Urushi tree which caused vomiting, severe dehydration and made their tissues poisonous to insects such as maggots.The monk would then lock himself in a stone tomb sitting in the lotus position Everyday he would ring a bell tied to string through a small opening to let those outside know he was still alive When the bell stopped ringing, the opening would be sealed.After another 1,000 days the monks would open the tomb to see if the mummification had been successful Japan has outlawed the practice and it is no longer practiced by any Buddhist sect Johnathan Swift, of Gulliver s Travels fame, penned a satirical pamphlet in 1729 which encouraged cannibalism Commonly referred to as A Modest Proposal, he suggests that the impoverished Irish might ease their economic troubles by selling their children as food to the rich Meant to mock the heartlessness of people s attitudes toward the poor, he lists several ways a child could be cooked and makes detailed calculations of the economic benefits of such a practice Kuru is an incurable degenerative neurological disease similar to mad cow which was endemic in the Fore tribe of Papua New Guinea and spread through their ritual funeral practice of cannibalism The Fore believed by eating the deceased they kept the persons life force within the community Researchers in the 1960 s were able to trace the outbreak of kuru to a single infected individual who lived on the outskirts of the village in 1900. This was chosen as the September read by my book discussion group and I m looking forward to hearing what the others thought about it when we pull it apart next week I was very impressed with it and enjoyed it enormously Great characters Oxford dons and lecturers , great setting Oxford University , great subject matter food all shot through with a death and a very, very strange will Great fun. I think I m in the minority here with my starring on this book I liked the book..it just was so danged draggy Is draggy a word It is now.Arthur is a member of a snooty super secret club that cooks and tries the food that no one has heard of In search of the most unusual and wonderful tastes One guy dies from eating a puffer fish That doesn t slow this group up They must taste everything With lots of wine Not that I hated any of that It made me want to try several of the dishes.Until old Arthur finds out he is dying He decides to donate his body in the ultimate way He wants the rest of his club to eat him This book is dark humor and I didn t hate the thing I was just bored in the mid timeand I love foodie books I received an arc copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. In some way or another we all find in our lives at least once that one friend who positively spells trouble for us, with a capital T involved in it Sometimes just being friends with him her is reason enough to be considered as an accomplice to so distinguished a person And heaven forbid, you are spotted in close vicinity to one of those little tricks your friend is fond of playing then there is no way you can escape the aftermath, should the situation arise What can you do in a situation as dire as this to prove your innocence Rat out on your friend or hope to all that is holy, the truth be out or else you are done for Especially if the said friend is not around when the alarm bells ring and you are caught.It s somewhat a similar situation here, in Ian Flitcroft The Reluctant Cannibals, that Mr Augustus Bloom Co find themselves in They are dealing with the aftermath of a situation that has arisen courtesy of their friend Arthur Plantagenet The catch is they can t rely on him to bail them out, you see he is dead and that is in itself the problem.Founders of the shadow faculty of gastronomic science, Augustus Bloom Co are friends and colleagues at St Jerome college in Oxford in 1969 As was the late Prof Arthur Plantagenet These gentlemen who all happened to be teachers of different fields ranging from medicine to law to history in the institution, one of them is a chaplain happen to have one thing in common with each other They are all connoisseurs of good food in other words they are gastronomes To put it plainly in layman term they are foodies, but that would be a vulgar term in their mind, considering they happen to be present in Oxford during the late 1960 s Also they all swear by Jean Anthelme Brillat Savarin The Physiology of Taste, that gastronomy should be declared a science, which can allow people as themselves to dedicate their lives to the art of cooking dining.These gentlemen in their love of food and with the intent of fine dining and wining form a society within the college called the shadow faculty of gastronomic science There are rules which are followed stringently by which the membership of this society is upheld You can be included or excluded depending on how you abide by these rules.Their love of food naturally has them ever in pursuit of the finest meal possible, by extension of which they hold dinners at the end of each college term Now the wish to have the best possible meals at all times of your life is a natural one, but not always prudent As is discovered by Prof Arthur Plantagenet his appetite or perhaps his habits to have the most scrumptious meal possible always, takes a toll on his health with his ever increasing weight Against the advice of his doctor, Arthur doesn t give up his love of food and thereby decides to dedicate not only the rest of his days to his love of gastronomy but also afterwards You see, in his final days decided on trying as much variety in food as possible, Arthur is relentless however the one question that bothers him the most is that the greatest taboo in the civilized human society the act of cannibalism or anthropophagy as Arthur likes to put it Hence in the final act of eccentricity Arthur in his will decides to leave a part of himself to be consumed, naming his friends and colleagues as the executors of his will So that the forbidden can be explored and the greatest question answered How does human flesh taste Naturally, Dr.Bloom Co are in a pickle pun intended How the remaining members of this secret dining society tackle the implications of their late friend s actions and the hurdles they face along the way forms the crux of the story as in answering this one question they face many others ranging from the moral to the ethical to the spiritual to the legal.As a reader, the things that make me pick up a book are perhaps ordinary, the gorgeous cover, the word of mouth recommendations or the popularity of the book from the best selling charts or the news of an award if any won by the book lately Next of course I read the synopsis, take a quick peek into goodreads and see the reviews, what is being thought about the book, if I find myself excited, I am sold and the book ends up in my TBR pile for sure It s at rare times that the title makes me take notice of the book than the other things, as is the case here Browsing Netgalley as I came across the page with this one, I paused and for a moment asked myself did I read that right The Reluctant Cannibals really And I don t mean this negatively but that is such an unusual title It s a paradox in itself How can someone be a cannibal and yet be reluctant at the same time or be reluctant and yet be a cannibal Let alone a group of people as the title implies plural and which was confirmed on my reading the synopsis So yes, out of curiosity and may be because of my fascination with the morbid, wicked and perhaps bizarre along with gory made me request the book and what do you know I get an approval And I am so happy to say my hunch was right This book is amazing, really it deserves the awards it has either won or be shortlisted for Believe me I don t make comments like these lightly What did surprise me was reading Mr Flitcroft author profile on goodreads I never would have taken this for the work of a d but author it s so brilliantly written I never could have guessed it either, but nonetheless I am incredibly happy to be one of the first few people who got a chance to read the brilliant work of a new author who I believe is here to stay Cause a man who can write about such a bizarre and lets admit it to a degree such a revolting idea the way Mr Flitcroft has managed, there is no doubt in my mind I came across another author extraordinaire Not only is the writing so refined but funny too, which I was so pleased by, as I did not expect it to be so owing to the subject but boy was I wrong And at times like these I find it a pleasure The characters right from the eccentric Prof Plantagenet to the practical Dr Bloom to the morally shaken poor reverend Charles Pinker are written in a well rounded way Even the character of the honorable Matthew Kingsley Hampton, whose only honorable attribute is the title bestowed upon him because otherwise to put it mildly he is a jerk or a complete asshole The only character that I did not like much was of Patrick Eccles, one of Augustus students and the dorm mate of honorable Matthew Kingsley Hampton, to me he was a bit of doormat Granted the chap is poor and all but really you gotta have some guts man, and not be strong only in numbers.All in all a splendid read.Not for the faint of heart and certainly those of stomach of course I was provided an advance readers copy for the purpose of reviewing courtesy of Legend Press and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review of the book This review is in no way influenced and is solely based on my own opinion This review can also be found at One reader A thousand lives