Anthony Bourdain is a busy guy. The author and TV star just launched a new special on the Travel Channel—At the Table with Anthony Bourdain—and makes regular appearances at major food events around the country (and the world). He has also written the foreword or introduction to four books pubbing this fall and winter. Bourdain confessed he's “something of a soft touch,” and there's a healthy dose of good karma involved with his endorsements. The bestselling author of Kitchen Confidential (Bloomsbury, 2000) admitted the outpouring of good wishes he's received throughout his literary career has made him want to return the favor. “If I hate something, I'm absolutely not doing it,” he reasoned, “but as passionate as I am about the things I hate, I'm pretty enthusiastic about the people I admire.” Plus, Bourdain still remembers when he wrote his first book, the novel Bone in the Throat (Villard, 1995), and the sting of rejection when his neighbor at the time, Robert Ludlum, wouldn't blurb it. So Bourdain's likely to turn a kind eye toward helping out other writers. “In almost every case,” he said, “I really mean every word.”

Au Pied de Cochon: The Album (Douglas & McIntyre, Sept.) Wild, Wild East: Recipes & Stories from Vietnam (Barron's, Sept.) Best American Travel Writing 2009 (Houghton Mifflin, Oct.) Dirty Dishes: A Restaurateur's Story of Passion, Pain, and Pasta (Bloomsbury, Jan.)
Martin Picard Bobby Chinn Various Pino Luongo
Bourdain's contribution:
Introduction Foreword Introduction Foreword
Why do it?
“I worship the ground Martin walks on.” “Bobby's a buddy from Vietnam.” “[My favorites are] evocative of the darker side” of travel. “Pino was my evil mentor.”