An Embarrassment of Mangoes

Front Cover
Doubleday Canada, Mar 11, 2011 - Travel - 320 pages
5 Reviews
Under the Tuscan Sun meets the wide-open sea . . . An Embarrassment of Mangoes is a delicious chronicle of leaving the type-A lifestyle behind -- and discovering the seductive secrets of life in the Caribbean.

Who hasn’t fantasized about chucking the job, saying goodbye to the rat race, and escaping to some exotic destination in search of sun, sand, and a different way of life? Canadians Ann Vanderhoof and her husband, Steve did just that.

In the mid 1990s, they were driven, forty-something professionals who were desperate for a break from their deadline-dominated, career-defined lives. So they quit their jobs, rented out their house, moved onto a 42-foot sailboat called Receta (“recipe,” in Spanish), and set sail for the Caribbean on a two-year voyage of culinary and cultural discovery.

In lavish detail that will have you packing your swimsuit and dashing for the airport, Vanderhoof describes the sun-drenched landscapes, enchanting characters and mouthwatering tastes that season their new lifestyle. Come along for the ride and be seduced by Caribbean rhythms as she and Steve sip rum with their island neighbors, hike lush rain forests, pull their supper out of the sea, and adapt to life on “island time.”

Exchanging business clothes for bare feet, they drop anchor in 16 countries -- 47 individual islands -- where they explore secluded beaches and shop lively local markets. Along the way, Ann records the delectable dishes they encounter -- from cracked conch in the Bahamas to curried lobster in Grenada, from Dominican papaya salsa to classic West Indian rum punch -- and incorporates these enticing recipes into the text so that readers can participate in the adventure.

Almost as good as making the journey itself, An Embarrassment of Mangoes is an intimate account that conjures all the irresistible beauty and bounty from the Bahamas to Trinidad -- and just may compel you to make a rash decision that will land you in paradise.

From the Hardcover edition.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - LibraryCin - LibraryThing

3.5 stars The author, Ann, and her husband, Steve, decided to take two years to sail to and around the Caribbean. This is a memoir of their journey. I enjoyed this. There was a little too much ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AnigL - LibraryThing

I'm not quite sure what it's about yet, but from the book jacket, I already know I'm attracted to the element of island breezes that the book brings. Read full review


Island Time
Part One
The FiveYear Plan
In the Marshes
Blown Away in theBahamas
Escape from Chicken Harbor
Part Two
Feelin Trini To Deh Bone
Return to Sweet Grenada
Sharing the Dream
Part Three
To Leeward at Last
Beautiful Babe Spit
The Passage from Hell
The Northbound Blues

The Delicious Dominican Republic
Not Quite Seasoned But Very Well Salted
Lambi and Lobster
That Demon Rum
Mr Butters the MysteriousBreadfruit andMonday Night Mas
Furious Georges
One Last Lesson
About the Author

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About the author (2011)

Ann Vanderhoof is an award-winning writer and magazine editor whose work has appeared in publications across Canada and the US. She lives in Toronto with her husband, Steve Manley. Their sailboat Receta is moored nearby on Lake Ontario.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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