What exactly is the story of Brandon Baltzley? It’s been told in print at least twice— once in the Tribune and once in Details. Yet there seems to be inexhaustible demand for a tale on the cutting edge of chef bad boy-dom, because Gotham Books, part of Penguin Group, has now listed Baltzley’s 320-page memoir, Nine Lives: A Chef’s Journey From Chaos To Control, on Amazon, complete with cover art and comparisons to books like Blood, Butter and Bones— and a release date of May 16, 2013.
The story it apparently tells is closer or further from the truth at times— like the Details article, it inflates the importance of the short-lived Tribute on our food scene— but its biggest problem may be that Baltzley moves too fast for publishing timelines; the synopsis talks about the planning of “Crux Restaurant” in Chicago but since that was first on his agenda, Baltzley has been on the move to Maine and then Pittsburgh, announced plans to walk away from Crux Collective, and is now talking about “traveling deeper into the midwest to begin building a restaurant,” wherever that means. So if the book interests you, go for it… just know where to go to read the next chapter, we guess.