The Telling Room: A Tale of Love, Betrayal, Revenge, and the World’s Greatest Piece of Cheese

By Michael Paterniti

(Dial Press, $27)

You’ll laugh, you’ll cringe and you’ll definitely feel famished as you read this touching tale about pursuing one’s passions. Michael Paterniti’s quixotic queso quest takes him to the tiny Spanish town of Guzmán, where he falls under the spell of a larger-than-life cheesemaker heartbroken by life’s cruel turns. Paterniti is a master storyteller; he brings to vivid life not only the wind-swept Castilian countryside but the memorable characters who live there, deftly balancing the story’s darker elements with hilarious footnotes and an infectious enthusiasm that soon will have you reaching for a map of Spain (and some artisanal cheese).