For many of us, food is life and life is food. We spend our days thinking about where we’ll be enjoying our next meal, and our nights dreaming of meals we’ve enjoyed in the past. So why not fill your non-eating waking hours with stories involving great food? From classics to under-the-radar tomes, we’ve rounded up 10 novels that every food-lover should read.
Over the years, thousands of novels have been written that involve food one way or another. After all, eating is a big part of the human experience, and that’s exactly what novels are supposed to capture, right? But some novels don’t just mention food in passing, they revel in it, bringing it front and center, making food as much of a character as the book’s protagonist.
There have been plenty of non-fiction books written about food; it’s hard to not get a kick out of reading about some famed gourmand’s travels throughout the world, eating everything they can get their hands on. But it’s less common to find novels that revolve around food, even though some spectacular ones have been written. You’d be hard-pressed to find a bookstore with a fiction section all about food, so we thought we’d make some suggestions for those looking for novels that make food pop right off the page.
Even if your life doesn’t revolve around food, these novels are still an extremely entertaining read. There are plenty of great non-fiction books that we’d also suggest, like Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, but these authors’ ability to weave narratives around the beauty of food, all while describing dining and gustatory pleasure in florid prose, will certainly make you hungry while teaching you something about how powerful food is, and how it’s about so much more than just eating a meal.
Read on to learn about 10 books that deserve a place on your reading list.