Cooking for Cannibals by Rich Leder is a hilarious book full of dark humour, romance and a sprinkling of cannibalism.
Thank you to Emma of damppebbles blog tours and Laugh Riot Press for sending me an Advanced Review Copy of Cooking for Cannibals in return for an honest review.
In Cooking for Cannibals, Carrie Kromer has finally unlocked the secret to the Fountain of Youth, working in a secret lab in LA. Totally out of character for her, she decides to steal the pills and give them to her mother and the other residents at her mother’s care home. This sets off a chain of events that no one could have predicted — including the arrival of ex-convict and chef, Johnny Fairfax.
I am a big fan of B-Movies that combine camp humour with gore, and Cooking for Cannibals is the perfect literary equivalent. Cooking for Cannibals is a hilarious, fast-paced dark comedy that had me hooked throughout the whole book!
The storyline is totally outrageous and I loved every minute of it. Carrie and Johnny are chased and investigated by pharmaceutical hitmen known as ‘fixer’ and the ‘cleaner’. At times I was reminded of the Princess Bride in the writing style and the way that these two are described (but that’s no bad thing — it’s one of my favourite books of all time). Even though they are the ‘bad guys’, we learn about their childhood, their lives and how they got to become hitmen in the first place. This was great and adds an extra dimension to the whole story.
And this is true for all of the characters. Despite its crazy storyline, the characters throughout the book remain engaging and I found myself utterly invested in them. The residents of the Copa had me laughing out loud in places! There is a lot of romance (and sex) in this book which I usually hate — but it was all fantastically written and I was drawn in throughout (and cheering for them!). The descriptions of love, romance and how it feels to be swept away in a whirlwind romance were so perfectly described, I could almost feel myself falling for the characters too.
Carrie especially is a great character and I really loved the sections from her point of view — her character doesn’t fall into any of the usual tropes. I also really loved the rats Carrie cares for. Known as the Greek Gods, Carrie loves them and cares for them, and experiments on them with the initial dose of the medication.
This is a fantastic, dark read that is lots of fun — you’ll want to hold onto your hats for this one, as this book is a non-stop rollercoaster from beginning to end!
The blurb for Cooking for Cannibals
Fountain of youth? More like murderous medication!
Carrie Kromer pushes the boundaries of science, not her social life. The brilliant behavioral gerontologist’s idea of a good time is hanging out with her beloved lab rats and taking care of her elderly mother and the other eccentric old folks at the nursing home. So no one is more surprised than Carrie when she steals the lab’s top-secret, experimental medicine for aging in reverse.
Two-time ex-con Johnny Fairfax dreams of culinary greatness. But when his corrupt parole officer tries to drag him from the nursing home kitchen, the suddenly young-again residents spring to his defence and murder the guy—and then request Johnny cook them an evidence devouring dinner to satisfy their insatiable side-effect appetite.
As their unexpected mutual attraction gets hot, Carrie and Johnny find themselves caught up with the authorities who arrive to investigate the killing. But even more dangerous than the man-eating not-so-senior citizens could be the arrival of death-dealing pharmaceutical hitmen.
Can Carrie and Johnny find true love in all this bloody madness?
Cooking for Cannibals is a dark comic thriller with a heaping helping of romance. If you like fast-paced plots, unconventional characters, and humor that crosses the line, then you’ll have a feast with Rich Leder’s wild ride.
About the author, Rich Leder
Rich Leder has been a working writer for more than three decades. His credits include 19 produced movies—television films for CBS, Lifetime, and Hallmark and feature films for Lionsgate, Paramount Pictures, Tri-Star Pictures, Longridge Productions, and Left Bank Films — and six novels for Laugh Riot Press.
He’s been the lead singer in a Detroit rock band, a restaurateur, a Little League coach, an indie film director, a literacy tutor, a magazine editor, a screenwriting coach, a wedding guru, a PTA board member, a commercial real estate agent, and a visiting artist for the UNCW Film Studies Department, among other things, all of which, it turns out, was grist for the mill.
He resides on the North Carolina coast with his awesome wife, Lulu, and is sustained by the visits home of their three fabulous children.