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America the Edible: A Hungry History, from Sea to Dining Sea Hardcover – November 9, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books (November 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781605293028
  • ISBN-13: 978-1605293028
  • ASIN: 1605293024
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Richman’s genuine, contagious enthusiasm for food keeps America the Edible enjoyable. His descriptions of favorite dishes are tantalizing, detailed, and accessible. He’s more prone to visiting a standout hot-dog joint than an haute-cuisine spot, making the book useful for travelers, with even more utility provided by sidebars on how to tell an authentic eatery from a tourist trap." —The Onion’s AV Club
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

ADAM RICHMAN is the host of the Travel Channel series Man. v. Food. He earned his master’s degree from Yale University, has appeared in several TV shows, and has worked in many restaurants around the country. He lives in Brooklyn.

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Customer Reviews

I'm a big fan of Adam's TV show, Man vs. Food.
Jeff
A culinary romp in 9 American cities, it gives you a real feel of each place: the history and the great local food.
Ba
In the end, you end up rooting for Adam mostly because he just seems like a nice guy.
Timothy B. Riley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 35 people found the following review helpful By A. Reid VINE VOICE on November 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I am a fan of Richman's tv show (Man vs. Food), where he demonstrates a kind of down-to-earth charm that makes him instantly accessible, a foodie's "everyman." Accordingly, I was pretty eager to get my hands on this book, but I have to admit that I didn't find the read that rewarding. The problem I had is highlighted by this passage from its description: "Part travelogue, part fun fact book, part serious culinary journalism, Richman's America the Edible illuminates the food map in a way nobody has before."

This book is "part" of a whole lot of things, but it doesn't really add up to a comprehensive whole. There's not enough attention to food and history, and entirely too much attention to the lovely lady by his side (or not) at any given moment. When he focuses too heavily on these elements, the book develops a startlingly purple hue that contrasts oddly with more prosaic prose: "I braced for the arrival of this switchblade-sexy rockabilly baby who couldn't have weighed more than 105 pounds yet flattened me like a 17-ton tidal wave. Experience had taught me that she was twice as unpredictable as a tsunami, and capable of far more damage. Her sudden, summer-storm flashes of passion or petulance captivated me completely, her reactions a flurry of tattoos and coal-black eyeliner, hairpins and histrionics. She made me a lion, and for sport would slaughter me like a lamb. And I bled out into a bourbon glass at bars along Bay Street, loving every frustrating minute of it. If I was seeking grace, I had come to the wrong place, it would seem."

Contrast this faux "noir detective" narrative with this:
"Some stalls and the families who run them have been in the market for decades, even 50 years or more.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By NickFury on August 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
One of my absolute favorite authors is Anthony Bourdain. The guy is a genius with the written word. He's sometimes crass, often funny, and molds words with the ease of a poet. And he talks about food. It's a win-win.

So, when I saw Adam Richman (from Man v. Food fame) had a book out, I was eager to read it. On the show he seems charismatic, funny, and there's no doubting his excitement about food. The book must be great, right?

Not quite ready to pay the $25.99 sticker price for the hardcover, I passed on the book--just like we regretfully sometimes pass on that last slice of pie fully knowing you'll be back. As luck would have it, I was at the dollar store and lo, "America the Edible" was available for a buck. Boo-yeah! I saved $25!

Finally having read the book, I can say I learned many things from "America the Edible." Here they are in no particular order:

1. I am not as cool as Adam Richman: Neither are you. Neither is anyone for that matter. In fact, I don't think even he is as cool as he thinks he is. Do you remember that kid in school (everybody had at least one) who would tell you stories about how cool he was? Like the time he drove his father's Corvette and he was only six? Or when the Globetrotters went to his house for his birthday party? And you thought, "Wait a minute, I went to his birthday party and he had a poster of the Globetrotters--they didn't actually go there." Well, Adam comes off as that guy.

The book starts out with him in Los Angeles waiting for a call from his agent. He makes sure to blast you in the face with a couple of hard yet awkwardly used cuss words, just so you can get the picture that he's "'da bad boy from Brooklyn," not the sweet, unassuming gentleman in M v. F. (Wouldn't want to get them confused.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Evelyn Uyemura VINE VOICE on November 13, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I had no idea that Adam Richman was someone famous till I was half-way through this book and finally looked him up online. So I just read it as a book. it wasn't exactly what I was expecting, but it was a pretty fun romp. First thing you have to know is that Adam seasons his food writing with 4-letter words and a fair amount of sex. Neither is offensive to me, but if you are of delicate sensibilities, this will probably not be your cup of tea. Quite a lot of the food is orgasmic to him, and some of it serves as foreplay to a more literal orgasmic pleasure, and some of it (lobster rolls in particular) he wants to have sex with.

Another thing to know about this book is that it only includes cities where Richman happened to stay for a while and eat some good food. It makes no claim to be complete or representative, though it does cover quite a few places. It is also not a history of American food, or a history of America by way of its food. He does include some odd historical and geological paragraphs to each chapter, some of which are of questionable relevance and/or accuracy. I was happy to read about Maine being a "drowned coast," which is a fact I have long enjoyed knowing, but when he says that Maine "joined the United States in 1820, well, sort of but not really. Most of what is now Maine was part of Massachusetts till then. So it's true that Maine became a state in 1820, but it's kind of like saying that West Virginia joined the United States in 1863.

But see? What does that have to do with food writing? Not much. The best part of this book is the extremely vivid, enthusiastic descriptions of the taste of good dishes. This man likes his food, and he is capable of making your mouth water just by his descriptions.
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