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Reflexions [Paperback]

Our Price $ 23.76  
Retail Value $ 27.95  
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Item Number 294815  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   416
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.8" Width: 6" Height: 1.1"
Weight:   1.5 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 25, 2005
Publisher   Brick Tower Books
ISBN  1883283434  
EAN  9781883283438  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
This book begins in New York in 1951 where Olney, a struggling artist, waited tables in Greenwich Village, then moves to Paris and weaves a magical description of food that becomes so real--as if you were actually there with Olney. It is a long-awaited story of the man who brought the simplicity of French cooking to the United States, and a statement about one of the finest and most important food professionals in the world.

Buy Reflexions by Richard Olney from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781883283438 & 1883283434

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More About Richard Olney

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! The late Richard Olney was and is an American culinary icon. He was a member of the eminent Academie International du Vin of Provence for many years. He was chief consultant to the Time-Life Good Cook series and was the author of The French Menu Cookbook, Yquem, a history of the wine of Chateau d'Yquem, and Ten Vineyards Lunches.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Not just more chilly than charming; surprisingly tedious in places as well.  Nov 25, 2007
Mr. Olney was one of the truly great writers about food and wine, and his other works will be classics long after this one is deservedly forgotten. It has great value as a character study, but I ended up feeling pity and a sense of relief that it was over, and promptly began to re-read his other works to remind myself of his remarkable achievements. For timeless writing, read almost anything else he ever wrote instead, and forget this mean-spirited and roughly written assemblage
words from the master  Nov 4, 2006
the best cook America has produced. the one that Alice Waters, Pepin and Child all bowed to.
before REFLEXIONS, his autobiography, he was the editor-in-chief of the wonderful Time-Life Good Cook series,
27 volumes.
Raw Genius  May 3, 2006
I have no idea how to rank this book. Five stars for poignancy, immediacy, honesty, biographical interest, etc. One star for editorial polish, journalistic fairness, figura, etc. I believe this book must be taken as-is, understood for what it is: the loosely assembled notes that were the basis for Richard Olney's autobiography, a project cut short by his death. I hesitated for a long time before reading this, afraid that its much-castigated coarseness and gossipy indiscretions would taint my fond appreciation for Richard Olney the Food-Saint of Sollies. Having just now finished it, I am grateful that his family published it, and that they did so without editorial interference. The writing varies between raw and well-done, the structure of the book is clear but without nuance, the narrative of his life is interrupted by many, many pages of menus and accounts of three-star meals, but what stands forward of all the note-taking and transcriptions of journal entries and family letters is this: Richard Olney was a great pallate and a warm, if cantankerous, man. I never met him, but I feel that behind the elegance of his cookbook prose and the bitchiness of many of his personal relationships was a generous, loving man, often lonely, who was passionate about sharing food and wine with his many adoring friends. I am a hardened reader, jaded even, and not prone to weeping, but the sudden end of this book is like an arrow in the heart. It's ME I mourn for. I have to respectfully but emphatically disagree with the majority of reviews below. Their focus on Olney's petulence and "difficulty" is, I believe, a narrow, unfair, and unkind reading of a manuscript not intended for public consumption. One has to accept or reject the whole man. I accept. I can only dream of living so fully and generously, my petty heart be damned.
correction  Jan 19, 2004
I must object to one reader-reviewer's description of Richard Olney's brother James as "a capable but generally unremarkable academic." Autobiography as a field of literary criticism did not exist before James Olney's landmark book, Metaphors of Self. As a writer, teacher, and organizer of dozens of conferences and institutes on autobiography, he has been the most dominant presence and most pervasive influence on others in the field he created, even those who disagree with him.
And his brother Richard's book, while gossipy, is eloquent and charming.
Ouch!  Dec 27, 2003
Egads, here by his own hand we see for ourselves what a nasty, petty, vindictive man Mr. Olney was. On and on and on we read of "friendships" with people he can't stand yet who stay in his life year after year after year. Why, we wonder? Mr. Olney reveals himself to be a loner, probably not very happy in the world, who lived off a family allowance or inheritance (we're never quite sure) until the early 1970s when his reputation for someone who knows food and wine launches him into cookbook writing (generally successfully, though not a real superstar like, say, Julia Child and M.F.K. Fisher, both of whom he detests). What we're left with here is a self-portrait of a man who didn't fit in, who was elitist and petty and mean-spirited, and the one pleasure of this book is that he's so nasty we can't look away until the end, like watching a car accident. The early part of the book works well as a portrait of a young homosexual painter with a trust fund "struggling" as he eeeks out a Bohemian life before finding and moving into a house in the countryside. Again and again we are told of people trying to seduce him and yet he never takes anyone up on this. What, are we to believe he never had sex after his first black lover and he part ways? This functions well as a look into the catty inner circle of the food world, but in the end, all I felt was pity for Mr. Olney, a man who never fit in and who seemed to take pleasure only in the superficial. Perhaps, I'm wrong, but that's the way it reads in this book, which by the way starts out like a book and then becomes mostly a collection of diary entries and letter excerpts. Glad I read it. You may find it interesting as I did. But I did not like Mr. Olney at all reading between the lines, and I suspect that's why he has so much antipathy toward seemingly everyone, because they didn't like him either. I doubt this book will be around for long. Stock up and sell high in the future.

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