Shucked by Erin Byers Murray
Life on a New England Oyster Farm

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Bill Buford's Heat meets Phoebe Damrosch's Service Included in this unique blend of personal narrative, food miscellany, and history

In March of 2009, Erin Byers Murray ditched her pampered city girl lifestyle and convinced the rowdy and mostly male crew at Island Creek Oysters in Duxbury, Massachusetts, to let a completely unprepared, aquaculture-illiterate food and lifestyle writer work for them for a year to learn the business of oysters. The result is Shucked--part love letter, part memoir and part documentary about the world's most beloved bivalves.

Providing an in-depth look at the work that goes into getting oysters from farm to table, Shucked shows Erin's fullcircle journey through the modern day oyster farming process and tells a dynamic story about the people who grow our food, and the cutting-edge community of weathered New England oyster farmers who are defying convention and looking ahead. The narrative also interweaves Erin's personal story--the tale of how a technology-obsessed workaholic learns to slow life down a little bit and starts to enjoy getting her hands dirty (and cold). This is a book for oyster lovers everywhere, but also a great read for locavores and foodies in general.


About Erin Byers Murray

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ERIN BYERS MURRAY is a Boston area journalist, specializing in food and wine writing. Most recently, she was the Boston editor for Her work as been published in the Boston Globe, Food and Wine, Boston Magazine, Bon Appetit, and many more. Visit her at
Published October 11, 2011 by St. Martin's Press. 365 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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When her one-year tenure was over, the author returned to her cushy life, wiser for her blue-collar experience but oblivious to the inevitable differences—despite her avowed solidarity—that will always separate her voluntary incursion from the toil of those who must oyster for their livelihood.

Sep 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Shucked: Life on a New Englan...

Publishers Weekly

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Boston-area food blogger Murray writes about a year working on a Cape Cod oyster farm—a demanding work cycle, with backbreaking duties.

Sep 12 2011 | Read Full Review of Shucked: Life on a New Englan...

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