On February 6, José Andrés announced via Twitter that a book based on his experience in Puerto Rico was in the works. Now, his project is one step closer to filling book shelves.
Anthony Bourdain Books/Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, has announced that it acquired the North American rights to Andrés' forthcoming book, via a press release. WE FED AN ISLAND: The True Story of Rebuilding Puerto Rico, One Meal at a Time will follow the James Beard Award-winning chef's efforts to serve over three million meals to those affected by Hurricane Maria's devastation.
“With a fraction of the resources available to the government, huge non-profits or NGOs, José Andrés and World Central Kitchen fed hundreds of thousands of desperate people in Puerto Rico, in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria," said Bourdain, who is good friends with Andrés, in a statement. "Their ingenuity, creativity and fortitude deserve to be recognized, and recorded and replicated as a practical blueprint for how humans can and should best react in the face of disaster. To say that I am proud to publish this book, and to help tell this vital story, is a vast understatement."
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A portion of the book's proceeds will go towards the Chef Relief Network of Andrés' own World Central Kitchen. Richard Wolffe, the co-writer of Andrés’ cookbooks and his two PBS series on Spanish cooking, will co-author the book.
“We want to tell the inside story of what we saw on the ground—the good and the bad—of the crisis, the response, and how a plate of food does more than just fill you up," Andrés said in the statement. "It fills you with hope.” Just one day prior to the publishing announcement, the James Beard Foundation recognized the Spanish-born chef as Humanitarian of the Year for his advocacy on food and hunger issues.
This won't be the first time Andrés has dabbled in publishing. In 2005, the chef released Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America, and 2008, he published Made in Spain: Spanish Dishes for the American Kitchen.