Chop Chop Kitchen Nightmares has nothing on the horrors of the Swan, the fancy London restaurant in Wroe's darkly comic novel. In the eyes of our unnamed… Chop Chop Kitchen Nightmares has nothing on the horrors of the Swan, the fancy London restaurant in Wroe's darkly comic novel. In the eyes of our unnamed… 2014-04-17 Fiction The Penguin Press
Book Review

Chop Chop (2014)

CHOP CHOP Simon Wroe
CHOP CHOP Simon Wroe
EW's GRADE
B+

Details Release Date: Apr 17, 2014; Writer: Simon Wroe; Genre: Fiction; Publisher: The Penguin Press

Kitchen Nightmares has nothing on the horrors of the Swan, the fancy London restaurant in Wroe's darkly comic novel. In the eyes of our unnamed narrator, a student-turned-novice chef, the Swan's kitchen is a torture chamber — but also a sanctuary for its staff of oddballs, who thrive on filthy potshots. (''You've got the fattest arse I've ever seen. We should get your arse in a pan and render it.'') Plot isn't Wroe's strongest suit; the story hinges on a shadowy, underdeveloped villain known only as the Fat Man and his cultlike dinner club. But brightly drawn characters and delectable writing (a frazzled chef's head is said to look ''farther away than ever, pushed out of the top of his body like toothpaste from a tube'') make this debut a first course worth savoring. B+

Originally posted Apr 23, 2014 Published in issue #1309 May 02, 2014 Order article reprints