My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Short-listed for the 2013 Prix Aurora, Food for the Gods ticks all the boxes: It’s impeccably researched, craftily written, with wit, humour, screamingly funny but believable characters and a rocketing good pace.
Dudley unfolds the story of Peplos, a put-upon murdered-but-resurrected son of the King of Lydia (a king, it should be noted, who fancied serving up an economical stew-of-son to his guests), who now attempts to make his way in Athens as, what else, a celebrity chef. What follows is a mad-cap and yet endearing escapade of villainous acts, interfering but well-meaning gods, who-dunnits and a love-story to boot. And Dudley carries this all off with a ridiculously deft hand, never missing a beat. Truly, I didn’t want the story to end, and never once had a moment of flagging interest.
Published by Canadian indie press, Ravenstone, Food for the Gods is a shining example of the kind of genius and excellence that can result from small, independent press. If you’re looking for an intelligent bit of escapism, Food for the Gods is your ticket.