Life, on the Line: A Chef's Story of Chasing Greatness, Facing Death, and Redefining the Way We Eat

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Grant Achatz

Narrated By: Nick Kokonas

Publisher: Tantor Media

Date: March 2014

Duration: 12 hours 54 minutes


In 2007, chef Grant Achatz seemingly had it made. He had been named one of the best new chefs in America by Food & Wine in 2002, received the James Beard Foundation Rising Star Chef of the Year Award in 2003, and in 2005 he and Nick Kokonas opened the conceptually radical restaurant Alinea, which was named Best Restaurant in America by Gourmet magazine. Then, positioned firmly in the world's culinary spotlight, Achatz was diagnosed with stage IV squamous cell carcinoma—tongue cancer.

The prognosis was grim, and doctors agreed that the only course of action was to remove the cancerous tissue, which included his entire tongue. Desperate to preserve his quality of life, Grant undertook an alternative treatment of aggressive chemotherapy and radiation. But the choice came at a cost. Skin peeled from the inside of Grant's mouth and throat, he rapidly lost weight, and most alarmingly, he lost his sense of taste. Tapping into the discipline, passion, and focus of being a chef, Grant rarely missed a day of work. He trained his chefs to mimic his palate and learned how to cook with his other senses. As Kokonas was able to attest, the food was never better. Five months later, Grant was declared cancer-free, and just a few months following, he received the James Beard Foundation Outstanding Chef in America Award.

Life, on the Line tells the story of a culinary trailblazer's love affair with cooking, but it is also a book about survival, about nurturing creativity, and about profound friendship. Already much-anticipated by followers of progressive cuisine, Grant and Nick's gripping narrative is filled with stories from the world's most renowned kitchens—the French Laundry, Charlie Trotter's, el Bulli—and sure to expand the audience that made Alinea the number-one selling restaurant cookbook in America last year.


  • Anonymous

    This is a very interesting story, told in a very uninteresting way. There are many points in this book where both author's begin to build momentum and allow you to begin to settle into the story, only to end the build up before finishing the narrative. Each small story about Grant's past, be it cooking for his girlfriend's family, or making a mistake as a young professional chef is abruptly ended without expanding on the consequences, causing the reader to miss out on the connection to the character and the lesson he learned. A few times while listening, I rewound the story because I thought it had skipped ahead, only to find that it was in fact the end of the chapter, it was just never the end of the story.

  • keith ATANACIO

    Amazing story. Very inspiring. I have listened to this audiobook many times. A foodie's kind ofbook.Perfectly narrated. The best story of perseverance,overcoming challenges ,friendship and celebrating life.

Life, on the Line: A Chef's Story of Chasing Greatness, Facing Death, and Redefining the Way We Eat

by Grant Achatz

has successfully been added to your shopping cart

Life, on the Line: A Chef's Story of Chasing Greatness, Facing Death, and Redefining the Way We Eat, Grant Achatz