The Discovery of Chocolate by James Runcie
"Although it is true that I have been considered lunatic on many occasions in the last five hundred years, it must be stated, at the very beginning of this sad and extraordinary tale, that I have been most grievously misunderstood."
These are the words of Diego de Godoy, traveller, adventurer and seeker of fame and glory who sets out to Mexico in the hopes of finding gold. What he ends up finding is love, longevity and chocolate.
The story begins in 1518 and spans over 500 years as our naïve, but gold-seeking protagonist journeys to Mexico, hoping to unearth a variety of treasures. He soon meets and falls in love with Ignacia, a beautiful native.
Not long afterwards, Diego is ordered back to Spain. As a parting gift, Ignacia gives him a potent and spicy brew called chocolate with the promise that as long as he is alive then she will be too.
Unbeknown to him, the chocolate brew is a life-extending elixir that will leave him to wander the earth over a period of more than 500 hundred years.
What follows is a journey in pursuit of his long lost love, the perfect chocolate and is characterised with significant encounters with strange and wonderful characters who aid him in his search and creation of the most decadent and tantalising chocolate delicacies.
A vividly descriptive novel made piquant with chocolate recipes aplenty, The Discovery of Chocolate will have you wishing you could eat the pages.
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