Title: Stanley Park: A Novel
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf Canada, Toronto, Canada
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Signed: Signed by Author
Edition: First Edition
First edition, stated; first printing, full number line. Signed by the author on the title page. The author's debut novel. Book is square and unmarked; corners and spine ends unbumped. The dust jacket is not price-clipped (original price $32.95); an "Autographed Copy" sticker on the front panel; Brodart protected. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 006376
Betty Quan's full-cast dramatization of Timothy Taylor's sizzling first novel reveals the dark side of fine dining. Alessandro Juiliani stars as Jeremy Papier, a brilliant young Parisian-trained chef, who will do almost anything to keep his high-end Vancouver restaurant, Monkey's Paw Bistro, afloat. Jeremy, who views the cooking industry in terms of gang warfare, is a self-styled "Blood," a believer in preparing unpretentious dishes from fresh, local ingredients. He has nothing but contempt for the "Crips" who bow to every passing food fad.
But when his latest financial scam fails, Jeremy is forced to strike a deal with the devil in the form of Dante Beale (played by Scott Hylands), the owner of an undeniably "Crip" chain of gourmet coffee shops. Mix in Jeremy's eccentric professor father ? who lives with the homeless in Stanley Park ? and a decades-old mystery involving two murdered children, and you have a tantalizing concoction of satire and suspense.
Review: In Timothy Taylor's debut novel Stanley Park, aspiring food artiste Jeremy Papier attempts to juggle the finances of his fledgling eatery, The Monkey's Paw, and his conflicted feelings about his attractive sous-chef. Meanwhile, on the other side of downtown Vancouver, his anthropologist father camps out in Stanley Park to study a group of homeless men. Impending financial ruin drives Jeremy into the clutches of an evil coffee magnate while his father delves deeper into the indigent lifestyle, probing the mystery of two dead children once found in the park as well as his failed marriage to Jeremy's mother. A tragicomic denouement takes the characters back to their human roots as hunter-gatherers in the 21st century.
The big idea in Stanley Park is that global corporate culture threatens the local connections that sustain us. Only the outcasts in Stanley Park retain these connections, and one of them imparts to Jeremy the secret of trapping a swan: "'Stinky box does it,' Caruzo informed, scratching himself. 'Stinky box is all.'" He retrieves a discarded hot dog shipping box and explains the technique: "'I distract him.' Caruzo said. 'You kill him. Distract. Kill.'" Though our hero cannot bring himself to dispatch the bird, he understands the basic link with nature. Stanley Park isn't Crime and Punishment and doesn't pretend to be, even if the vocabulary is sometimes a little pretentious. Taylor, who won Canada's 2000 Journey Prize for his short fiction, tells a good story, creating plausible characters for this coming-of-age narrative and making a good start to a novelistic career. --Robyn Gillam, Amazon.ca
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