In the Kitchen
is essentially a descent-into-madness tale, and we're warned of this in the novel's very first paragraph:
When he looked back, he felt that the death of the Ukrainian was the point at which things began to fall apart
it was the following day on which, if a life can be said to have a turning point, his own began to spin.
As the story unfolds, Gabriel Lightfoot's incipient breakdown reveals its roots: his mother's manic/depressive state, his mill town upbringing, his own desperate plans to make something of himself in the world of high class London restaurants, and the changing patterns of British society due to immigration and economics.
Though written in the third person, the point of view is all Gabriel's, who has contentious relationships with everyone in his life. He suffers from a...
Beyond the Book
A Short Lesson in Restaurant Terminology
Chef: the cook in charge of a restaurant; from the French chef de cuisine, literally the head of the kitchen.
Executive Chef: sometimes called the head cook, he or she is the one responsible for running the food preparation in a kitchen, ordering food and supplies, making staff schedules, dealing with administrative tasks. Executive chefs are usually employed by large restaurants, hotels, country clubs and even cruise lines. Most manage a staff of at least ten employees.
Sous Chef: a chefs assistant, from the French sous meaning "under."
Chefs de Partie: each runs one section of the kitchen, oversees prep, cooking, and...