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A grown-up tale, loosely inspired by Alice In Wonderland, Alice is a celebrity chef who runs away from her own dinner party.
Ghosts, the media, food. Set in the present day, A Knife And A Fork is in part a social satire and a black comedy.
Alice Mocatta is giving a dinner party for her husband’s old acquaintances, a self-conscious London W11 media crowd. Unable to bear the dinner party any longer, Alice leaves the table during the dessert course and locks herself into a cupboard in the basement of the house, where she remains for most of the book.
Inside the cupboard, she finds objects – some more significant than others, which trigger recollections – in particular, memories of that last year before the dinner party.
What People Say…
A hot new talent on the scene. Playful, shocking and inventive, this is an unpredictable roller-coaster of a book. I hardly ever read a book more than once, but for Ingrid Stone’s confident (and tantalisingly saucy) debut, I’ll make an exception. Hugely recommended.
You know when you open a book and read the first page, and it’s like… oooooh yes. I love it when that happens. This is a gorgeous story – rich, sensual, hilarious in an awful sort of way, and so utterly recognisable, not so much via the narrative context, but through the human one. I relished every lyrical word of it and didn’t want it to finish.
Amazing first time novel. I was absolutely amazed to discover this is Miss Stone’s first novel. She writes with such freedom and maturity that she’s sure to go on to great success.
Sharp as mustard. This is a deliciously written work, delivered with practised precision. Ms Stone carefully sets her table, but once etiquette is at least followed, then all hell lets loose. Characters are wickedly observed and exposed with humour and relish – and altho the dinner party is not an uncommon device in which to reveal the frailty and lies of our relationship, this particular view is both accessible and memorable. Of course there is pathos, pain and no matter how sharp our perceptions are, we all fall prey to hurt pride, yet here the author holds back on the indulgence, maintaining tight control. Balanced and well disciplined – an excellent read.
Sharply observed, written in language that is quite lyrical, the reader is quickly absorbed into the life of the characters – with all the glamour, triumphs, frustrations and sordid aspects. It was hard to put down.