Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler (A Review by Simone Gigg)
Sweetbitter is about twenty two year old, Tess, who has recently arrived in New York City and lands a job as a “backwaiter” at a celebrated downtown Manhattan restaurant. What follows is the story of her education: in champagne and cocaine, love and lust, dive bars and fine dining rooms, as she learns to navigate the chaotic, enchanting, punishing life she has chosen. As her appetites awaken – for food and wine, but also for knowledge, experience, and belonging – Tess finds herself helplessly drawn into a darkly alluring love triangle.
This book takes you into the world of what it is like to work in a top restaurant but also takes you on a journey of a young woman trying to find herself. Tess is someone you just want to mentor and help but she meets others at the restaurant who all have their own secrets. It makes for an interesting read.
It is well written but I have only rated it 3.5 because you do just want to shake Tess at points and there is only so much about the behind the scenes of the restaurant world that you want to know about. However, I am sure it is a very realistic depiction for those that have worked in this world but I think I would rather stay on the guest side.
I would recommend this for book club as there is a lot to discuss!
Review by Simone Gigg