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Moselio Schaechter mschaech at sunstroke.sdsu.edu
Mon Sep 4 02:56:19 EST 2000

For those interested in literary works of fiction that include fungi, I
recommend "The Fly-Truffler" by Gustaf Sobin.   The author is, I believe,
an American who has lived for many years in Province and has written books
of poetry and archeology.

This is a brief, rather romantic novel about a Provençal linguist and his
moving relationship with his young wife. The story includes some poignant
and astonishing effects of eating truffles, as well as details concerning
truffle hunting in the man's estate and the proper way of preparing them
for the table.   There is also an interesting narration about the
traditional ways of growing silk worms in that region.   I found the
writing vivid and enticing, but would like to make the usual disclaimer
about such being a matter of taste.   I reckon that one ought not to read
this book for the sake of truffling alone, but for its artistic value as
well.    I am reminded of a review of Lawrence's "Lady Chatterly's Lover"
written by a garden expert for a gardening magazine.

Elio Schaechter
Author, "In the Company of Mushrooms"
Harvard University Press


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