Frank Bruni Shares His Darker Food Secrets in Born Round

A new memoir from the soon-to-be-former Times restaurant critic

Born Round makes for a breezy read. Even at its darkest, it goes down easy. But the book bogs down in details like Bruni's mom's kitchen renovation and accounts of too many fruitless dates (it's hard to have sex if you won't take your windbreaker off).

After reading Bruni for years, it feels odd to suddenly know his secrets, which put his reviews in a new context. His pieces were always well written, but hinted little of the big, funny personality that shines in the book. As his job as the world's best-fed man draws to a close (Sam Sifton takes over the position in October), we can breathe a sigh of relief for him. There's nothing better than eating as a civilian.

sdigregorio@villagevoice.com

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