The Debt to Pleasure

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To like something is to want to ingest it and, in that sense, is to submit to the world; to like something is to succumb, in a small but contentful way, to death.

Tarquin Winot – hedonist, food obsessive, ironist and snob – travels a circuitous route from the Hotel Splendide in Portsmouth to his cottage in Provence. Along the way he tells the story of his childhood and beyond through a series of delectable menus, organized by season. But this is no ordinary cookbook, and as we are drawn into Tarquin’s world, a far more sinister mission slowly reveals itself . . .

Winner of the 1996 Whitbread First Novel Award, John Lanchester’s The Debt to Pleasure is a wickedly funny ode to food; an erotic and sensual culinary journey. Its elegant, intelligent and unhinged narrator is nothing less than a work of art himself.

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