July 31, 2013

Hungry by Darlene Barnes

Hungry by Darlene Barnes is the type of honest memoir that is truly an enjoyable read. She shares not just the story of her experiences as a cook at a fraternity house, but also about herself, and how she was able to truly become herself through this experience.

Book Description
Newly arrived in Seattle, Darlene Barnes stumbles on a job ad for a cook at the Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity on the University of Washington campus, a prospect most serious food professionals would automatically reject. But Barnes envisions something other than kegs and corn dogs; she sees an opportunity to bring fresh, real food to an audience accustomed to "Asian Surprise" and other unidentifiable casseroles dropped off by a catering service. And she also sees a chance to reinvent herself, by turning a maligned job into meaningful work of her own creation: "I was the new girl and didn't know or care about the rules." 

Naively expecting a universally appreciative audience, Barnes finds a more exasperatingly challenging environment: The kitchen is nasty, the basement is scary, and the customers are not always cooperative. Undaunted, she gives as good as she gets with these foul-mouthed and irreverent--but also funny and sensitive--guys. Her passion for real food and her sharp tongue make her kitchen a magnet for the brothers, new recruits, and sorority girls tired of frozen dinners. 

Laugh-out-loud funny and poignant, Hungry offers a female perspective on the real lives of young men, tells a tale of a woman's determined struggle to find purpose, and explores the many ways that food feeds us.” – Hungry

My Thoughts
Hungry is a book that I honestly enjoyed more than I thought I would going into it. The author writes with such a passion and very real account of her experiences, that it feels like she is sharing her life story with you over a cup of coffee. I laughed, I cried, and I am inspired by her story. She gets the meaning that jobs and people you meet along the way aren’t just random people or acquaintances, but become an extended family to you, even many years after you have seen them.

If you have ever felt like the career you are in is not for you, but are afraid to take a leap of faith and try to pursue your real passion in life, this is the book you need to read for inspiration. I highly recommend it.

* Thank you to the publisher of Hungry, Hyperion, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.


Joel Higgins said...

Great review. Here's ours: http://blog.collegechefs.com/TabId/119/ArtMID/522/ArticleID/18/Hungry-What-Eighty-Ravenous-Guys-Taught-Me-about-Life-Love--the-Power-of-Good-Food-Book-Review

Tia said...

This is great!