Dimitris and Damocles live in the same block of flats. They share a love of cooking, and, it soon transpires, a lover - Nana. What follows is the story of their competition to win Nana's heart through her appetite. As the plates pile up, and the recipes grow ever more mouth watering, a bizarre and comic duel develops, fought with sea-urchin salads, stuffed vine leaves and delicacies from all corners of the Aegean to win the consummate femme fatale or to end up with the sting in the tail...
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(177mm x 111mm x 10mm)
The Harvill Press
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
A slender volume, but well-reduced - a curvaceous little tale of a pair of lovers, Dimitris and Damocles, who vie for the favours of their mutual mistress through the medium of the mezze. The plot is easily digested: the two gentlemen of Athens are neighbours. Proximity - curtain-twitching, lift-loitering - leads to the discovery that they share the favours of a lady assumed by both to be the wife of another. The delectable Nana, a seductress of capricious tastes, makes flirtatiously unreasonable demands: one moment her fancy turns to tripe soup delivered to her lips with a teaspoon, the next, nothing else will do but sea urchins sauced with a blast of Etesian wind. The struggle for amorous supremacy is where the full thrust of the narrative lies, but despite the promises of the title, titillation confines itself to the preparation of a well-turned moussaka, a lasciviously-stuffed tomato; there might occasionally be a hint of amorous exhaustion - but absolutely no dirty talk. The besotted epicures - brothers-in-arms united by passion - console themselves with kolliva, an exquisite mosaic of corn, black and white raisins, finely chopped parsley, grated almonds and hazelnuts, ground coriander, pomegranate seeds and icing sugar. Call it culinary ononism for Greek gastronomes. And, incidentally, the recipes are terrific. Review by ELISABETH LUARD. Editor's note: Elisabeth Luard's Sunshine and Saffron was reviewed in September. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Andreas Staikos
Andreas Staikos, an Athenian, was born in 1944. He has written and directed several works for theatre and has also translated into Greek works by Marivaux, Moliere and other French classics from the eighteenth centuries. Anne-Marie Stanton-Ife teaches English language and literature in Athens and works as a translator.