Nicholas Evans’ agent said the writer, his wife, her sister and the sister’s husband became sick after cooking and eating mushrooms they had picked in the woods on Aug. 23.
The A.P. Watt literary agency said tests established that the mushrooms included the highly toxic variety Cortinarius speciosissimus, which attacks the kidneys.1
At the risk of sounding even colder than I usually do, I would like to ask if I am the only one surprised by this story’s details. I vividly remember being told literally hundreds of times as a small child that I should never eat anything that I found in the wild. I am therefore surprised that a famous novelist seems not to have ever learned a lesson I understood when I was five years old. Are British children encouraged to eat unidentified plant life?