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Prime

af Poppy Z. Brite

Serier: Ricky and G-Man (Novel)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
436942,603 (3.86)7
Two years after the opening of Liquor, New Orleans chefs Rickey and G-man are immersed in the life of their restaurant, enjoying a loyal cast of diners, and cooking great booze-laced food. All's well until a bad review in a local paper not-so-subtly hints that their "silent" backer, celebrity chef Lenny Duveteaux, has ulterior motives. When Lenny is accused of serious criminal activity by eccentric D.A. Placide Treat, Rickey and G-man realize it may be time to end their dependence on him. When Rickey is offered a plum consulting job at a Dallas restaurant, it seems the perfect way to beef up their bank account. But taking the gig will mean a reunion with Cooper Stark, the older chef with whom Rickey shared an unsettling cocaine-fueled encounter back in culinary school, as well as dealing with gung-ho Texas businessman/restaurateur Frank Firestone. At G-man's urging, Rickey finally accepts the offer and revamps Firestone's menu to rave reviews. Home in New Orleans, Rickey has just settled back into his daily kitchen routine when he receives disturbing information that forces his return to Dallas. As Placide Treat's machinations grow ever more bizarre, G-man learns that there's more to the story--and that Rickey is in Texas-size danger.… (mere)
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Viser 1-5 af 9 (næste | vis alle)
The second in the Liquor series, taking in Dallas as another location, and more twists, turns, and trouble for the two chefs, Rickey and G-Man. More great food talk, conspiracy and corruption, and plenty of alcohol permeate the story, and it's a thoroughly enjoyable followup to "Liquor". ( )
  misterebby | Jul 5, 2020 |
Prime is a fun follow-up to Brite's Liquor. To me, it reads primarily as a character and setting book (New Orleans restaurant scene), with a bit of crunchy mystery on the side. ( )
  lpetrazickis | Jan 7, 2016 |
Poppy Z. Brites's second book in her series about New Orleans chefs Rickey and G-Man isn't quite as interesting as her first. The weakest of the three published thus far, in my opinion. Still, not a bad book, a sort of transitional work I think. As she slides from a standalone novel into a series, she manages to get that accomplished without making the reader lose interest. ( )
  Tyllwin | Feb 16, 2011 |
In the past few years, Poppy Z. Brite has taken her writing in a new direction. Previously known mostly for horror fiction of a particularly gory kind, Brite has turned to writing about a pair of restaurateurs in pre-Katrina New Orleans. While there is a mystery aspect to these stories, mostly they are tales of two young men in a committed relationship who work and play together, mostly with food. These are books for foodies to delight in, fiction for cooks, gourmets and gourmands.

Rickey and G-man make their debut in Liquor. Rickey and G-man are best friends and lovers of long standing, as well as cooks who began their careers washing dishes and are now at the top of the cooking game. Despite their skill, they find themselves living in near poverty, and have both recently been fired. Rickey comes up with a gimmick that seems made for New Orleans: liquor in every dish. They start serving up meals and snacks in a friend's bar, yummies like tequila chicken wings, artichoke dip with a touch of cognac and prosciutto-wrapped figs marinated in Calvados. The bar is overwhelmed with locals who love the gimmick.

Then Lenny Duveteaux, a celebrity chef who seems like an amalgam of every celebrity chef you've seen on The Food Network, steps into the picture, offering to bankroll Rickey and G-man if they'd like to open their own restaurant. And thus is Liquor born, an old-style Creole restaurant with a new taste, and alcohol in every dish. Rickey and G-man gather a staff of cooks from around the city, create their dishes, and move towards opening day.

There are problems at every step. It seems as if there's some force at work trying to destroy the restaurant before it even opens. Lenny's dollars help resolve most problems, but some seem intractable. Here's where the mystery comes in, though frankly it isn't much of one despite the dramatic denouement. And that's not the point, after all. The fun of this book is in reading about the food and the trials and tribulations of running a professional kitchen. Anyone who has read Anthony Bourdain's nonfiction, or Ruth Reichl's, or who subscribes to Gourmet or Bon Appetit is likely to love this book.

Fortunately, Liquor is only the beginning. The adventures of Rickey and G-man continue in Prime, in which Rickey is hired as a consultant for a Dallas restaurant that isn't pulling in customers despite its exquisite cuisine. The chef there is a man with whom Rickey had a run-in during his short time at the Culinary Institute of America in New York, Rickey's only time away from New Orleans until this Dallas trip. Rickey labors to come up with a new concept for the restaurant while ignoring the sexual attraction between him and the chef, and missing G-man with a depth of longing anyone truly in love knows well. Once again, however, trouble makes an appearance as a politician in New Orleans is out to get Lenny and wants to use Rickey and G-man as weapons. Again, the mystery isn't the point; it's the food and the restaurant life. And reading about them is great fun.

Soul Kitchen is the third and most recent entry in the series, and was finished literally the night before Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. The book is dedicated to a group of restaurants and food providers who may or may not return to the city, which has still not come close to recovering. Readers who have paid attention to precisely where Liquor is located will have concluded that the restaurant has to have fallen on very hard times since Katrina, and I’m guessing that that's the tale that will be told in the next book.

This book, on the other hand, is about Rickey opening a second restaurant on a gambling boat. He is once again a consultant, but this time he has had the opportunity to appoint the chef de cuisine himself. He chooses Milford Goodman, a man who was an excellent chef until he was wrongfully convicted of murdering the owner of his restaurant and served a decade or so in prison. Now DNA evidence has cleared him of the crime, and Rickey wants to give him a chance.

But everything is going wrong. Rickey wrenches his back badly and develops a bad Vicodin habit to keep the pain to a low roar. The kitchen at Liquor is understaffed and the dishes have lost their creativity because Rickey's not paying them sufficient attention. The owners of the new restaurant, called Soul Kitchen, want Rickey on duty there as much as possible despite the fact that Milford is doing a fine job and doesn't need -- or want -- the help that Rickey is supposed to be giving him. And something is badly wrong between Milford and the Soul Food's owners.

Once again, the mystery takes a back seat to the food talk; it's almost as if Brite has to get the suspense out of the way so that she can tell her real story. It remains a delight to read about innovative food, restaurant gimmicks, and life in the kitchen. The relationship between Rickey and G-man continues to grow, and their devotion to one another, despite temptation, is a pleasure to watch.

The foodies in your life would jump with joy to receive a package of these three books under the Christmas tree this year. They are pure fun. I recommend them highly. ( )
  TerryWeyna | Apr 26, 2009 |
Plot: Not very notable in the first half of the book. The second half gets a not-very-mysterious murder mustery, with the main clue dropped with trumpets and flashy signs.

Characters: Rickey is beginning to be grating, while G-man is growing. The side characters are actually more interesting than the central characters, who are doing their best to be normal and not involved in anything.

Style: Very simple writing and sentence structure without too much variety. Fits the overall book, but it isn't something to get excited about. The story builds up some suspense towards the end, but not very much.

Plus: more food talk than in the first instalment of the series (Liquor).

Minus: the story wanders around aimlessly for large sections of the book, and the murder mystery plot is very contrieved.

Summary: Light and relaxing, but far from something special. ( )
  surreality | Jun 5, 2007 |
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Two years after the opening of Liquor, New Orleans chefs Rickey and G-man are immersed in the life of their restaurant, enjoying a loyal cast of diners, and cooking great booze-laced food. All's well until a bad review in a local paper not-so-subtly hints that their "silent" backer, celebrity chef Lenny Duveteaux, has ulterior motives. When Lenny is accused of serious criminal activity by eccentric D.A. Placide Treat, Rickey and G-man realize it may be time to end their dependence on him. When Rickey is offered a plum consulting job at a Dallas restaurant, it seems the perfect way to beef up their bank account. But taking the gig will mean a reunion with Cooper Stark, the older chef with whom Rickey shared an unsettling cocaine-fueled encounter back in culinary school, as well as dealing with gung-ho Texas businessman/restaurateur Frank Firestone. At G-man's urging, Rickey finally accepts the offer and revamps Firestone's menu to rave reviews. Home in New Orleans, Rickey has just settled back into his daily kitchen routine when he receives disturbing information that forces his return to Dallas. As Placide Treat's machinations grow ever more bizarre, G-man learns that there's more to the story--and that Rickey is in Texas-size danger.

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