Troubador The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing

Released: 28/08/2021

ISBN: 9781800463929

eISBN: 9781800466364

Format: Paperback/eBook

Review this Book

The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing


Compelling to the last page, The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing is a story about the power of suppressed memory, of friendship, and of our relationship with the natural world. Set within vivid images of a backwater in an unnamed African country, the novel is both poignant and funny.

Mozzy is a cook in a struggling safari business and dreams of escaping the perilous wilderness and his despised employer to become head chef in an upmarket restaurant in London. Spurred on by his wife, a member of a visionary religious sect, his fantasy becomes reality. But will his sanity and marriage survive in this new world? Can a small bird help him find his way?

Mozzy’s path takes him from Africa to London and back, but it is the painful journey of the heart that ultimately fulfils Mozzy’s destiny.

The Bookbag

The voice of this book is charming and so fun - I found it thoroughly enjoyable. I wasn’t always clear where the story was going, but the delight in the unusual word choices and perspective was enough to keep me reading. Recommended for anyone in a reading rut who is looking to try something new and a bit different.

Original review:

by NetGalley review

Mozzy is a chef with high aspirations and he is sure he has the ability to get him there. He is a real-life safari chef, who loves to serve VIP guests.

Even with a boss who doesn’t appreciate his abilities and a wife who might just be in a cult, he finds himself in another country at the behest of one of those very kind guests.

I really enjoyed this read, it was a different perspective to what I am used to reading and I might have to go and dig out the author’s previous works!

Original review:

by NetGalley review

A chef at a decrepit birdwatching outfit dreams of running a restaurant in a glamourous city. This novel is a funny and sometimes heartbreaking story of friendship and guilt and healing.

Original review:

by NetGalley review

The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing was a lovely read about a man with a dream and the challenges he needed to overcome to realize what that dream could be. It was a heart-warming story although a bit cliché (resulting in the loss of one star). The imagery was lush and descriptive aiding in the enjoyment of the novel as a whole. I would recommend to someone needing a relatively quick and easy read with a charming main character.

Original review:

by NetGalley review

The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing by Andrew J.H. Sharp tells the story of Chef Mozzy Mlantushi, working on a safari tour, who dreams of becoming a chef especially in a European or American restaurant. Mr. Sharp was brought up, and worked in Africa, currently living in the UK.

Mozzy Mlantushi takes tremendous pride in his job as a Chef for a small safari company. He sees an opportunity when a daughter of a famous English restauranteur comes for a tour.

The VIPs, however, are interested in a rare bird. Chef Mozzy believes that this is his big break to be recognized.

From some reason, I have a weak point for stories taking place in Africa. However, I’ve only been to the top northern part of the continent, not even the part we think about when we hear “Africa”.

The Chef, the Bird and the Blessing by Andrew J.H. Sharp has several aspect which usually capture my interest right off the bat. As mentioned, takes place in Africa, along with a culinary theme which is always interesting.

The characters are unique and intriguing, the story a cliché – but it works. The narrative is sweet and humorous with a very likeable protagonist. Chef Mozzy Mlantushi is, to put it mildly, a good man trying to do his best, and furthermore, follow his dream.

I especially enjoyed Chef Mozzy’s character. An honest man who is a better person than those who virtue signal their “goodness”. The code he lives by is something that we should all aspire to, as difficult as it is, difficult for him as well.

The unique perspective was enough to keep me reading. The narrative, for instance, is a pleasure to read through, the African voice was in my head from the start.

The story does have other characters besides Chef Mozzy. He has a boss that doesn’t appreciate him, a wife who spends all their money to give to their church, and of course, the VIPs who he comes across.

All in all, this was just a lovely, quick book to read. A heart-warming story, as well as lush descriptions of nature and meals.

Original review:

by NetGalley review

This is the story of a cook named Mozzy, a journey, hopes and dreams. And what a wonderful story it is.

This is a story that draws you into Mozzy's world (as I think most of us have been in situations where we want to do something better but are unsure of the outcome). This is a story that will warm your heart, make you laugh and entertain you.

The characters are great and all fit in well with the story, the surroundings are well described and you can picture them in your mind. (which I love). It is a book that is easy to read, the story is charming and I am sure everyone will enjoy reading it.

Original review:

by NetGalley review

  • Buy as a printed
  • £7.99

  • 6 customer reviews
  • Buy as an ebook
  • £2.99
  • Find this ebook at your favourite retailer
Also by Andrew Sharp / Related Books