As always, MK is full of facts and stories that invites the reader in. For anyone wanting a great read by MK, try SALT. Unfortunately the narrator's very poor accents (he's obviously never been to Newfoundland), and bad pronunciations (it's newfenland, not new foundlend + many others) took away from what would have been a better book.
The book's telling of the history of fishing for cod off the Atlantic coast of Canada and New England is almost always interesting and at times fascinating. For instance Kurlansky makes a convincing case that Basque fishermen were catching cod on the Grand Banks and drying them on Newfoundland's shores way before Columbus set sail for the Indies. But Kurlansky spends as much time writing about cod cuisine as he does on the history cod fishing (or maybe it just seems that way), and there are very few topics that interest me less than the details of, say, how cod was cooked in 16th century Portugal.
For the audio book version, delete all that how-to-cook-cod stuff.
Yes. I like his choice of subject matter and even though it may be due to the similarities of the subjects I enjoy the subtle cross references between his books.
Cod shaped the economic history of North America for several centuries as well as provided a major economic impact in much of Europe. You can't fully understand our history without reading this book.
The economic impact of cod tapered off as overfishing devastated the economic value of this important resource.
There are many historical and environmental lessons contained in this book.
The book is also entertaining and introduces you to real people who's lives have been profoundly altered by the mismanagement of cod fishing.
The topic of cod and fisheries is fascinating and well described and researched by Mark Kurlansky. It's a wonderful blend of science, history, culture, literature, culinary arts, etc... But it is a difficult "read" as an audiobook, despite a valiant attempt by the narrator. There are many quotes, recipes, and other passages that are better read on paper than heard.
A great way to learn about early explorations and how the one fish changed/influenced history. I feel I need a hard copy, though, because some of the recipes cannot be captured well in mere audio.
Not just a fish story. An interesting history of a very old industry with a very bleak future. I remember when cod was plentiful and inexpensive. Now I know why it is no longer on the menu. (I did skip the recipes at the end.)
In a this world, the destiny of which seems to be in the hands of those with the greatest lust for riches and/or power, it was fascinating to see how a seemingly insignificent item had such an effect on the course of history.