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Publisher's Summary

“[He] came to us through an advertisement that I had in desperation put in the newspaper. It began captivatingly for those days: Two American ladies wish...” It was these lines in The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book that inspired The Book of Salt.

In Paris, 1934, Bính has accompanied his employers, Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, to the train station for their departure to America. His own destination is unclear: will he go with "the Steins", stay in France, or return to his native Vietnam?

Bính has fled his homeland in disgrace, leaving behind his malevolent charlatan of a father and his self-sacrificing mother. For five years, he has been the live-in cook at the famous apartment at 27 rue de Fleurus. Before Bính’s decision is revealed, his mesmerizing narrative catapults us back to his youth in French-colonized Vietnam, his years as a galley hand at sea, and his days turning out fragrant repasts for the doyennes of the Lost Generation.

©2013 Monique Truong (P)2013 AudioGO
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

What listeners say about The Book of Salt

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Beautiful novel, poor reading

Since this book has so many French words and phrases, it needs a reader with a working knowledge of French. It was painful hearing this reader struggle with the French as well as the Vietnamese proper names. He’s also British, putting on an American accent.That’s really a crime against this book, which is a brilliant study of how French, Vietnamese, and American English are woven together in this story of an Indochinese cook in Paris in the 1930s.

3 people found this helpful

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Not worth a credit

Good story, but not good enough to listen until the end.
The first audiobook I skipped from chapter 10 to the end of chapter 24.

1 person found this helpful

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What is a madam?

Hearing the words “ my madam” in every sentence for the first 15 minutes of the book was torture. No interest in hearing more

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Great story bad narrator

I don’t usually write a review, but the narrator is completely wrong for this story. He sounds like Brain from “Pinky and the Brain”. It is a wonderful story of a Vietnamese man who becomes a home cook for Gertrude Stein, but the narrator is British and has trouble pronouncing the French and Vietnamese phrases in the book.

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Great audiobook

I really enjoyed this book and the voice narrator. I was able to put it in a lil speed, while still understanding the story.

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A Fascinating and Relaxing Read

I love this fascinating book and had not read anything quite like it before. I hope that Monique Truong writes a sequel to it one day; I would love to read more about Binh's experiences. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an unusual and entertaining read.

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I can't stop crying

I loved it. I had to read this book for class now I'm recommending it to all my housemates. Gorgeously written and we preformed.

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Gotta listen twice. wow.

was supposed to read it for class, decided to multi task, and couldn't stop. didn't even last me 36hrs.

...wow...

time for round 2!

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Trying to follow The Book Of Salt

I finished it because it was the choice for my book club, but I'm sorry I wasted my time and money. I couldn't follow or figure out what was going on. I don't know how it ended. I'm not even interested. Sorry.

1 person found this helpful