A Mystery Unfolds in a Cookbook

Jason Goodwin has successfully added a new flavor to the traditional detective novel. By adding a passion for cooking to the main character of his mystery series, he has added a sense of richness and depth to his writing. Goodwin’s talent at describing food inspired his fans to demand a “Yashim Cookbook.” He was more than happy to oblige, and now we have Yashim Cooks Istanbul!

Goodwin explained to NPR how he uses Yashim’s passion for cooking to advance the plot, “He’s chopping his onion, and he’s thinking over … that Russian woman he’s just interviewed — was she telling the truth? As a writer, it’s really useful to have something like that. It’s a sort of shtick for Yashim to have something to do.”

This reminds me of another great series that focused on food, Redwall! The wild feasts added so much color to the series. Something about adding food to literature gives it an extra sense of depth and flavor. Goodwin capitalized on this, intentionally or not, and now is reaping the benefits.  

Looking for a way to spice up your love for mystery novels? Maybe it’s time to go with Yashim on an adventure in Istanbul to crack the case of a stolen painting. Be warned though, make sure you read on a full stomach!


Featured image courtesy of NPR