Salt Water, by Josep Pla, Translated by Peter Bush
Translated from the Catalan by Peter Bush
Ever the authority on flavor and the brisk etiquette of sailing, eating, scheming, and smuggling, Josep Pla is our stalwart captain through each windy, sun-soaked tale set in the far northeast of Spain. A lifetime of reporting on current events gave Pla the necessary skills to describe the world in all its gritty, funny, invigorating detail.
Dripping with a panache that can turn in a comic instant to the most conciliatory humility, Josep Pla’s foray into the land and sea most familiar to him will plunge readers headfirst into its mysterious (and often tasty!) depths.
Here are adventures and shipwrecks, raspy storytellers, and the fishy meals that sustain them.
Most of the stories are laden with references to the glories of Catalan cuisine, so much better, Pla asserts, than the butter-heavy French cuisine up the coast; in just about every story, someone is eating anchovies and sardines and sea bream, and it’s a book not to be read on an empty stomach.