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Publisher's Summary

Anthony Bourdain's long-time director and producer takes listeners behind the scenes to reveal the insanity of filming television in some of the most volatile places in the world and what it was like to work with a legend.

In the nearly two years since Anthony Bourdain's death, no one else has come close to filling the void he left. His passion for and genuine curiosity about the people and cultures he visited made the world feel smaller and more connected. Despite his affable, confident, and trademark snarky TV persona, the real Tony was intensely private, deeply conflicted about his fame, and an enigma even to those close to him. Tony’s devoted crew knew him best, and no one else had a front-row seat for as long as his director and producer, Tom Vitale.

Over the course of more than a decade traveling together, Tony became a boss, a friend, a hero and, sometimes, a tormentor. In the Weeds takes listeners behind the scenes to reveal not just the insanity that went into filming in some of the most far-flung and volatile parts of the world but what Tony was like unedited and off-camera. From the outside, the job looked like an all-expenses-paid adventure to places like Borneo, Vietnam, Iran, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Libya. What happened off-camera was far more interesting than what made it to air. The more things went wrong, the better it was for the show. Fortunately, everything fell apart constantly.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2021 Tom Vitale (P)2021 Hachette Books

Featured Article: 30+ Anthony Bourdain Quotes That Capture His Zest for Food, Travel, and Life


Few chefs have impacted the world quite like the late Anthony Bourdain. Champion of all things food, an ally to many in disadvantaged communities, and an uncommonly honest, fiercely beloved personality, Bourdain left an indelible mark on the culinary landscape and the world before his tragic death in 2018. The late Anthony Bourdain was one of the greatest minds in the culinary world. Here are some quotes that best embody the legendary chef.

What listeners say about In the Weeds

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Even more than I expected

Since watching Road Runner a few weeks ago, I’ve been devouring the Bourdain story. Though familiar with his celebrity, I’d never watched any of Tony’s shows, so I had more or less stumbled onto RR by process of elimination while looking for in-flight entertainment, and now can’t get enough of the story. Tom Vitale’s appearances left me with what I’ve come to believe was an inaccurate impression of him (Tom), so I’m so glad that in consuming all the books on Bourdain I found this one. This was such a touching memoir, and as Tom mentions in the epilogue, it’s telling that he had to be reminded to share these stories as reflections of his own experiences rather than solely those of Tony. Tom Vitale’s writing style is different from Bourdain’s, but just as compelling and addictive. I realized early on that I was eager to get back to the story, increasingly to hear what Tom had to say, as much as to hear about how it was relative to Anthony Bourdain and their shows and travels.

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A good listen

Thoroughly enjoyed this book and reading.

Enjoyed Tom’s reading and “accents”.

Enjoyed and looked forward to the closing thoughts and the end of each chapter. Reminded me of similar phrasing in the recent Obama bio.

Could certainly feel the catharsis in the arc of this story.

Never saw the Bourdain series, but heading back to watch it.

Absolutely worth the time to listen. Reading might have been more worthwhile. Can’t fold down a page after a memorable comment when listening.

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  • jd
  • 10-22-21

Reflection is the books purpose. Moving forward is it’s intent. -Not just for anyone wanting more Bourdain!

Not just for anyone who just wants more Bourdain! Tom Vitale does a great and respectful job of documenting his experiences, thoughts and emotions during his 20 years working along side him. All of being professionally and personally melded into his life and work. The journey reveals opportunities and costs of the choices of self dedication and appreciation (and need) for the division of self from those activities. I hope Vitale finds many pages to fill in his future thoughts and accounts of his next accomplishments. -And maybe, follows that voice he finds taking him out of “the weeds”.

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Thank you Tom!

Excellent writing+narration. The recent content on Bourdain has helped with closure. Hope to hear more from Tom Vitale!

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Beautiful, entertaining, and melancholy in the best ways

I chose this book as someone who has had a love an appreciation for Anthony Bourdain and was hoping to get more out of a story that ended too soon. What I ended up with was love and appreciation for Tom Vitale. I loved his writing and his reading of his book. It opened my heart and and made me take pause and reflect. It also made me laugh quite hard many times. I will reread this, I will recommend this, and I will not soon forget it.

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I felt like I was there with Anthony Bourdain!

This book and story and was wonderful! If you're a fan of Anthony Bourdain you have to listen to this book! I'm grateful for the behind the scenes experience, I feel like I understand better now what happened to Anthony Bourdain and my heart aches even more now for the loss of such a talented and interesting man!

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Thank you for this Tom!!

Tom, please continue your writing and storytelling. This book filled and tugged at my heart. What a truly, extraordinary experience. Thank you

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Truth Beyond the Bourdain Myth

At this point, Anthony Bourdain is dead, and life has defied him into an icon of integrity, cultural savant, food god, and badass motherfucker. But, this book reveals him as a coworker and mercurial boss, and how invested he was in the quality of his work.

As an audiobook, it is apparent that the author is not an experienced voice actor, and his delivery often sounded monotonous and repetitive. However, his behind-the-scenes stories and experiences are priceless and revelatory.

Listening to this makes it clear that Bourdain was painfully, vulnerably human under his roughly spoken demeanor. And though this is not a book “to enjoy”, the truth it delivers is powerful.

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Could not put it down

Frankly a sad story about Tom, but a great in-depth postmortem look at the life of Anthony Bourdain, who I consider to have been a great man. He inspired me to travel and started my thirst to see this world we live in.

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If you love Anthony Bourdain

This is a great listen if you love No Reservations or Parts Unknown. It’s also great for travelers in general. We get to know the behind-the-camera drama and what Tony was like. Vitals does a good job narrating.