Monday, May 5, 2008
Flavor of the Week by Tucker Shaw
Overweight high school senior Cyril has two secret loves: Cooking and Rose. Of the two, he considers cooking the only attainable goal. Rose - beautiful, vegetarian, perfect Rose - will never see him as anything but a friend. So Cyril concentrates on his cooking, perfecting recipe after recipe to prepare for his AICA (American Institute of Culinary Arts) entrance exam. Meanwhile, an old friend, Nick, moves back into town. At first Cyril is ecstatic, since he and Nick were once inseperable friends. But then Nick gets interested in Rose. And even worse, Rose becomes interested in the supermodel gorgeous Nick. And when Nick asks for his friend Cyril's help in winning Rose over with a homecooked meal, Cyril reluctantly agrees. Thus begins a subterfuge involving food, lies and good intentions.
Cyril is a definite underdog, and readers will find themselves falling in love with him and his cooking. The characters are all well-developed for such a short story, and the plot moves quickly. The book is also filled with recipes, the names of which act as titles for the chapters (I can't wait to try the Kitchen-Sink Cookies!). If you think it's a bit predictable, you're right. It's a retelling of the play Cyrano de Bergerac by Rostand.