The Galactic Gourmet: A Sector General Novel (Sector General Series)

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9780312861674: The Galactic Gourmet: A Sector General Novel (Sector General Series)

Sector General. It's the massive hospital space station - 384 levels, with a staff of thousands - on the Galactic Rim, where human and alien medicine meet. It's also the setting for some of the most entertaining novels of modern SF, James White's Sector General series, which began three decades ago with Hospital Station.
Now White returns to Sector General to tell the tale of the great Gurronsevas, a massive, six-legged alien of considerable dignity, who is the most renowned chef in all the galactic federation.
Chef? Just so. But now, at the peak of his career, Gurronsevas finds that fame, honor, and a large staff of scurrying minions aren't enough anymore. He wants to take on the greatest challenge of his professional life: making hospital food palatable.
And not just any hospital, either. Gurronsevas has come to Sector General. And interspecies understanding may never recover....

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From Publishers Weekly:

On the 384 levels of the far-future Sector General Twelve Hospital, a staff drawn from dozens of races treats the ailments of hundreds more, and also devises treatments to help newly discovered intelligent species. In this first hardcover entry in the Sector General series, popular since 1962, a gourmet chef celebrated throughout the galaxy is appointed Chief Dietitian of Sector General. Gurronsevas is a Tralthan (imagine a smallish, six-legged elephant), talented enough to substantially improve the hospital's food but somewhat accident-prone. Exiled to the medical team of a First Contact expedition, he saves the kangaroo-like Wem by concocting ways of cooking vegetables that overcome their cultural taboos, which had condemned them to starvation on a planet whose ruined environment no longer produces meat. White, a retired British physician, tells the story entirely from Gurronsevas's viewpoint, with realism, a delightful dry wit, compassion and an intimate knowledge of the technology, philosophy and politics of the medical profession. Fans can look forward to an above-average installment in a series that, perhaps more than any other of comparable longevity, has survived with grace the changes in both the SF readership and the larger society.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews:

White's Sector General yarns--about a colossal space hospital designed to cater to the needs of humans as well as to the most numerous and staggeringly diverse bunch of aliens in science fiction--have been appearing intermittently since Hospital Station (1962). This time, Gurronsevas, the most accomplished chef in the galaxy--he happens to be a massive, six-legged, four-eyed alien from the planet Traltha--having taken over as Sector General's Chief Dietitian, faces the greatest challenge of his career: turning hospital food--amorphous, tasteless sludge familiar to humans and aliens alike--into tasty, eye-filling, mouthwatering real food, thereby promoting not only swifter recoveries among patients but better tempers among the staff. Gurronsevas's innovations are a success, but he also causes some disastrous accidents and runs afoul of the hospital's bigwig administrators. So, instead of being rewarded, he's shipped off with a hospital expedition that's heading into space in search of alien cultures in need of their services. And soon he's enjoying a whole new set of adventures. Humorous, lighthearted, inventive: a treat for series faithful and newcomers alike. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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