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Publisher's Summary

The innocuous cod has been the subject of international wars, national diets, economies, livelihoods, and health in general. Mark Kurlansky approaches the cod with his love of food and food culture, and leaps into history, folklore, and even recipes dating to the fourteenth century and forward. This famous fish spurred interest in the development of North America, and caused a whole nation of people to jump into fishing and ocean exploration. Including word origins, this audiobook also contains recipes and uses for all kinds of cod.
Enjoy Mark Kurlansky's books? Listen to an interview with the author on To the Best of Our Knowlege.
©1997 Mark Kurlansky (P)2002 New Millennium Audio, All Rights Reserved
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Critic Reviews

"Every once in a while a writer of particular skills takes a fresh, seemingly improbable idea and turns out a book of pure delight...No one who reads this charming tale will ever think the same of either the fish or the history." (David McCullough, author of John Adams)
"History filtered through the gills of the fish trade." (The New York Times Book Review)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Karen on 10-13-03

A great fish story

This review will be short and sweet. Fascinating but a bit long. I rate it a "4" due to it's length. Now...for a definite "5" rating, read "Salt" by the same author.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By B. W. Larsen on 03-01-03

Seven and a half hour about COD???

Yep, that's what you get from Mark Kurlansky... over seven hours of engrossing information and storytelling about a fish. What a successful blend of journalist, historian, and novelist Kurlansky turned out to be as proven by this very readable book.

Who would have thunk that the cod played a significant role in the maintenance of the american slavery trade and keep? That the fish nearly started a war between UK and Iceland in modern time? That the Vikings discovered the American continent because of the darn cod? That our pilgrims of Thanksgiving fame failed to eat the bounty of the sea and elected rather to starve than feast on lobster and cod?

The chapters on the Basques made me pick up the next book by Kurlanski; he clearly has a tremendous knowledge of the area and the history of the Basque people.

Each segment is capped off by a number of appropriate recepies based on cod from the area narrated. I guess this is probably better suited to the printed page than in the audible edition.

The narration is very good and helps keep the attention throughout the story.

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14 of 15 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Louise on 12-17-16

Thought provoking

I found the first few chapters incredibly tedious but as the book progressed towards the modern day, I became much more interested.
If you have even the slightest interest in the common fisheries policy, sustainability of fishing, fish farming etc, you will probably get something from this book.
Personally, it has given me a shove back towards veganism.

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0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Nathan on 01-12-17

Who would have thought?!

When I first heard about this book I was intrigued, as I trusted the opinion of the referee I invested the required 9 hours.

I'm pleased to say it was not wasted. A very well researched book which explores a diverse group of world changing events using the cod as the indispensable link between them.

Well read by the narrator which made it all the more pleasurable.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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