Posts Tagged ‘spirits (alcoholic and otherwise)’
Via The Daily Beast, we get a question on why people buy cookbooks. In an age when you can access all sorts of recipes online, and you can do so with an iPad or some other tablet computer, why buy a cookbook in print? Naturally, that question goes back to why buy any print books at all, but let us focus on cookbooks at the moment.
The author of the article provides some explanations such as cookbooks being objects of art and for some people the cookbooks are status symbols. But she goes on to make the argument that culture of cooking from cookbooks and recipes is moving online. To her, very often, cookbooks are given as gifts. Let me then look at why we buy cookbooks.
At home, The Better Half is a cookbook collector. We don’t really buy big, sumptuous, oversized cookbooks. We do buy a variety of cookbooks from practical ones to a few on various ethnic cuisines. I will add that I do collect, in a small capacity, some cocktail recipe books. Anyhow, part of the reason we get them is aspirational: we hope to make some recipes from the books. The Better Half and I do make some recipes out of them though probably not as many as we could in order to get the full potential. She particularly enjoys buying small and local cookbooks, the ones put together by local groups, churches, or community organizations. You probably won’t see those on Amazon or the bookstores, but they are part of her collection. Cookbooks are one of the areas she enjoys collecting and reading. Plus it makes me happy to make her happy when I can add another one to her collection. And while we do go online, we cook out of books when making a recipe. Having a laptop in the kitchen is not really an option for us, and we are not into tablets at this point in time. So, at least in our household, we still buy cookbooks.
Besides, cookbooks do not require power, a battery, an Internet connection, and unlike e-books, we actually own then and can do with them as we wish.
A little bit of everything this time around. There are some newer items and some things I am now catching up.
Items about books:
- The Good Vibes blog features a review of Rachel Kramer Bussel’s anthology Best Bondage Erotica 2012. The review mentions that “a wide variety of bondage styles are showcased, from heavy chains to characters who can be silenced with only a stern gaze. All genders and sexualities are represented, leaving the collection feeling diverse but still focused on erotic bondage.” By the way, the 2013 edition of the book is also out.
- Another erotica anthology. This one is Say Please, which is a collection of lesbian BDSM erotica. It is edited by Sinclair Smith, and it is reviewed in Kissin Blue Kraken (warning: this blog is an adult content blog, so may be NSFW).
- Via Yes! Magazine, a review of Hillbilly Nationalists, Urban Race Rebels and Black Power.
- Lambda Literary reviews a new history of the gay press. The book is Gay Press, Gay Power: The Growth of LGBT Community Papers in America edited by Tracy Baim. It is one of those books someone publishes on Amazon, so it may be a while before I see it, or the book makes it out into mainstream so to speak. But it does sound interesting.
- This is a manga series I was not sure whether to pick up or not. To be honest, the whole librarian suddenly becomes some hero or heroine genre seems cheesy (and I don’t mean that in a good way). In fact, I find that stupid The Librarian series of television movies annoying and dumb, like a very poor librarian’s Indiana Jones wannabe, in spite of the fact a lot of my professional brethren somehow like it. Go figure. Anyhow, this manga seems like it might be entertaining to read. The Manga Critic is reviewing volume 9 of Library Wars (link to volume 1). Sounds like I need to catch up. It’s a series with “slight goofy premise of librarians becoming a paramilitary force to fight censorship.” Now that sounds better.
- A Case for Suitable Treatment has a review of Battle Angel Alita: Last Order, Omnibus 1.
- A discussion of the novel Magic Words and the topic of Jews in the American Wild West at The Prosen People. Here is a bit more on the novel’s author’s work.
- A different idea: taking Medusa the gorgon and making a sympathetic love story out of her tale. That is what Sasha Summers did in her book Medusa: A Love Story. The book is reviewed at Bending the Bookshelf.
- A YA steampunk fantasy novel reviewed at Ninja Librarian. The book is Innocent Darkness. I have mentioned before that I am not a big YA reader, but once in a while I am willing to take a chance.
- Via Bending the Book Shelf, a review of Adventures in Fetishland, which is a BDSM retelling of the Wonderland tale. I do find some retellings or expansions on Wonderland of interest, so we shall see on this one. It is an e-book, so again, not something I may get to right away. The book’s author describes the book’s inspiration sources here.
- And speaking of Alice in Wonderland retellings, here is Alice in the Country of Hearts (Link to first volume in the series). The third omnibus edition is reviewed at A Case for Suitable Treatment.
- The Liquor Snob reviews The Brewmaster’s Table, a book about pairing beer and food. When it comes to liquor and food pairings, most people think wine, so this book may be a way to expand horizons.
Bibliographies and lists:
- The United States Naval Academy’s “Reading List for Life.” A few of them like Ayn Rand’s works (at least one of the professors gushes about how wonderful the book is), which may go to prove that just because they may be military folks does not mean they have good reading taste let alone good critical sense when it comes to books. Still, the list is worth a look.
- The Slog provides some brief reviews of three comic and graphic novels. From the list, I already read My Friend Dahmer, which I do recommend.
- Via the blog Write to Done, a list of “Top 10 Books for Writers You Need to Read Now.”
- In her July 2012 list of books read, the Dirty Librarian has some items of interest.
This time around I have a few books related to information literacy and librarianship; I keep on reading articles, but I have not tackled too many books on this topic, so I am jotting them down to help remedy that. In this installment, you will also find some science fiction and some graphic novels and manga. As always, if you read any of these, feel free to let me know if you liked them or not. You can also share in the comments any suggestions for things you think I should read.
Items about books:
- Via the Journal of Information Literacy (which is open access), something that is directly related to my work and sounds like something I have to read. This is a review of the book of the book Transforming Information Literacy Programs: Intersecting Frontiers of Self, Library Culture, and Campus Community.
- Here is another one from the Journal of Information Literacy, a review of the book Engaging First-Year Students in Meaningful Library Research.
- One more from the Journal of Information Literacy, a review of the book Information Literacy Beyond Library 2.o. The whole 2.o thing seems to be moving on (though some of the bad attitudes seem to remain).
- The Information Literacy Weblog mentioned the book The Busy Librarian’s Guide to Information Literacy in Science and Engineering.
- Via Marketing Matters for Librarians, a review of Building a Buzz: Libraries & Word-of-Mouth Marketing. This may be one I move up the queue a bit sooner. It would have been timely in my previous job, but I think I can still get something out of it now.
- Via A Case For Suitable Treatment, a review of the first volume of the manga Angel Para Bellum.
- I have mentioned now and then that I read Warhammer 40,000 novels, and they often feature the Space Marines, which are armored genetically engineered super soldiers. However, others have done tales of highly armored soldiers such as Robert Heinlein’s Starship Troopers (the book, not the movie). Now, there is an anthology dealing with armored warriors. The title is, well, Armored, and it is reviewed at Bookgasm. This sounds like one I do have to pick up soon.
- John Joseph Adams has another themed science fiction anthology, this one on mad scientists. John Scalzi featured the book in his big idea series. The book is The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination.
- A book that may be helpful if you want to cook and make more things at home. The book is Make the Bread, Buy the Butter by Jennifer Reese. It is reviewed over at Blogging for a Good Book.
- The Prosen People highlighted the cover of the book Electric Dreamland: Amusement Parks, Movies, and American Modernity. At the time they posted, the book was not out. Looks like it is out now, though looking at WorldCat, it does not seem too many libraries have it yet. I may have to investigate some more.
- Via National Public Radio (NPR), a discussion with the author of the book Victory: The Triumphant Gay Revolution. It is a history of gay rights that draws on in-depth interviews and a lot of archival material. A hat tip to Lambda Literary for this story and the next one.
- Via Edge on the Net, a review of Spandex, a comic collection about a gay superhero team.
- Via My Favourite Books, a review of The Punisher: Girls in White Dresses.
- Via Contemporary Japanese Literature, a review of Speculative Japan 2. The reviewer describes it as “an excellent anthology without even a single dull story. The premise or idea behind each story in the book is uniquely fantastic.” That sounds encouraging.
- Bob Sutton suggests that you check out the book Do Nothing! How to Stop Overmanaging and Become a Great Leader.
- Via Drinkhacker, a review of Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey: An American Heritage. The reviewer states that “quite simply, it’s a fantastic read for anyone with even a remotely passing curiosity about bourbon’s expansive history.”
- Via Manga Report, a review of Alice in the Country of Joker, Vol. 1: Circus and Liar’s Game. Sean Gaffney also has a review of this.
- Via A Case for Suitable Treatment, here is a review of Emerald and Other Stories.
- Something a bit different. I do enjoy some reading about food. I have read works by Anthony Bourdain and some others. So, I am willing to give this collection of essays a shot. The book is Best Food Writing 2012, and it was reviewed at City Book Review.
- Via Bookgasm, a review of the first volume in the manga Knights of Sidonia.
Bibliographies and lists:
- A set of three reading lists on Jewish topics, such as Jews and politics, via The Prosen People.
- A set of reviews of lesbian and queer erotica from Lambda Literary, their Cliterotica issue for summer 2012. Ran a bit behind in jotting down this list.
- Via the Food Politics blog, a couple of books on the food industry reviewed.
- Bookgasm highlights a trio of graphic novels from the Dead Space video game franchise. I am not big on video game novels, but once in a while you find something interesting, so I am willing to take a chance.
- The Dirty Librarian has some items that I may be interested in on her list of books she read for January of 2013. From the list, I already read Gonzo.
As found at the Dirty Librarian:
Bold the ones you have and use at least once a year, italicize the ones you have and don’t use, strike through the ones you have had but got rid of.
“I wonder how many pasta machines,
breadmakers, juicers, blenders, deep fat fryers, egg boilers, melon ballers, sandwich makers, pastry brushes, cheese boards, cheeseknives, electric woks, miniature salad spinners, griddle pans, jam funnels, meat thermometers, filleting knives, egg poachers, cake stands, garlic crushers, martini glasses, tea strainers, bamboo steamers, pizza stones, coffee grinders, milk frothers, piping bags, banana stands, fluted pastry wheels, tagine dishes, conical strainers, rice cookers, steam cookers, pressure cookers, slow cookers, spaetzle makers, cookie presses, gravy strainers, double boilers (bains marie), sukiyaki stoves, ice cream makers, fondue sets, healthy-grills, home smokers, tempura sets, tortilla presses, electric whisks, cherry stoners, sugar thermometers, food processors, bacon presses, bacon slicers, mouli mills, cake testers, pestle-and-mortars, and sets of kebab skewers languish dustily at the back of the nation’s cupboards.”
A small commentary:
- We use our blender all the time, mostly for mixing cocktails, but also for a few other things.
- Martini glasses. Yes, absolutely we do make martinis at home. In a pinch, they work well for serving margaritas. However, do have margarita glasses too.
- The slow cooker. We love our crock pot. We make an awesome chili with it. In fact, we wish we could use it more.
- Pestle and mortar. Useful for crushing garlic and making a few other things.
I will add that there are a few things on this list that I have no idea what they are.
Moving right along with another list of blog posts and notes on books I would like to read down the road. Will I ever read everything I keep clipping and saving? Probably not given how short life is, but making the attempt is fun. Plus I think these lists do help me out a bit for reader’s advisory. As always, for my four readers, if you find anything interesting in these lists, and you read it, feel free to leave me a comment and let me know. Also, any reading suggestions from the audience are always welcome. So, here we go:
Items about books:
- Via Boing Boing, a review and book trailer video of Gonzo: a Graphic Biography of Hunter S. Thompson. Graphic novels is always a genre/format I like, and I do like the ones that teach me about a subject. This one does look pretty good.
- Drinkhacker reviews the book Drinkology Beer: A Book About the Brew. They seem a bit more positive about this one when compared to a previous Drinkology book. By the way, it is one of the things I like about Drinkhacker: in addition to drinks and cocktail reviews, they also cover books on those topics.
- Robert Reich’s new book, Beyond Outrage, is out as an e-book. I usually do not read e-books. Heck, I don’t even have an e-reader nor tablet, nor do I have any big interest in acquiring one. Yet the book does sound interesting and relevant. I may have to make an exception.
- Guys Lit Wire make a comment about steampunk in recent literature, and they review Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti. Personally, I do worry a bit steampunk may be starting to become the next sparkly vampires or zombies shoved into “classical” novels fad. Then again, there are some good works of steampunk out there, and I am hunting for them. My experience has been mixed so far (some good books, some pretty awful, boring things). I still like the aesthetic overall. The novel in question now seems interesting in blending steampunk and a circus, two settings I definitely like.
- The Manga Critic reviewsThe Apartments of Calle Feliz.
- The Manga Critic also reviews the first volume of Until Death Do Us Part.
- Like many people who know at least a bit of 20th century history or Nazi history, I was aware of Hermann Göring. However, I had no idea he had a brother, let alone a brother that actually worked to save Jews from concentration camps. I learned about this topic from this article at Des Spiegel about a new book on the topic. The book is William Hastings Burke’s Thirty Four. The book was published in 2009, and the article mentions a German language translation is coming out this year (2012). After recently reading The Nazi Seance, I am interested in this time of history, at least, the lesser known elements.
- Via the Good Vibrations blog, a review of the anthology Best Sex Writing 2012.
- Via Stiletto Storytime, a review of an Indian culture novel set in Bombay. I have not read much when it comes to fiction about the Indian subcontinent. Last one I remember is Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie, which I liked but I did find laborious. The book in question is Narcopolis. I think I am willing to take a chance on this one.
- Via Bookgasm blog, a review of a Hollywood story in Infamous Players: a Tale of Movies, the Mob (and Sex).
- A whole book on how to sharpen a pencil? Really? Yes, really, there is such a thing, and such a book is reviewed here at Pencil Revolutions. The book in question is, well, How to Sharpen Pencils by David Rees.
- Via Bookgasm, a review of W.H. Pugmire’s short story collection Gathered Dust and Others (link to publisher as not able to find on WorldCat at this time). Fans of H.P. Lovecraft probably want to pick this one up.
- Also via Bookgasm, a review of Joe Golem and the Drowning City. Mike Mignola, creator of Hellboy, is a co-author, so I am hoping this will be a good one.
- I am not much of a romance reader, and I don’t read a lot of YA fiction (I am very selective of what I read in YA. I tend to like my fiction very adult). So, this selection may not seem like a good fit. And yet, there is something about this vampire post-apocalyptic dystopia that seems appealing to me. So, I am adding to the list. The book is The Immortal Rules. It is reviewed here at Ninja Librarian. It is part of a series, so who knows, if the first volume works, I may follow the series. If not, at least I did give a spin. Once in a while trying something new is a good thing.
- RT Book Reviews has an extended review of Rachel Kramer’s erotica anthology Curvy Girls: Erotica for Women. The reviewer describes the book as “a wonderful anthology, with some stories being better than others, but the truly beautiful thing about this collection is that it celebrates our differences and doesn’t pigeonhole big women into a specific type. The anthology really embraces the diversity of plus size women and those who admire them.” Since I do like erotica, and I will admit I do like ladies on the curvy side (to borrow from the book title), I am adding this to my list. Plus, it might be fun to share it with the Better Half as well.
- I am a fan Morgan Spurlock’s work, and I have enjoyed his documentaries. SuperSize Me was a bit hard to watch, but it was good and educational. I had no idea there was a graphic novel adaptation of it until the boys at Guys Lit Wire pointed it out. And it was done by Dark Horse. Holy Smokes! I have got to get my hands on that. The graphic novel’s title is Supersized: Strange Tales from Fast-food Culture.
Book lists and bibliographies:
- I have to admit that reading Warhammer 40,000 novels has become my new guilty pleasure. Granted, like many series, some works are better than others, but the ones I have read so far have been good overall. In the works I have read, there have been appearances of Battle Sisters, and I have been curious about these characters. The blog My Favourite Books provides a review of a trio of novels about the Adepta Sororitas. These may help satisfy my curiosity, plus they sound like fun stuff to read.
- Here is another e-book, but this is something that is free and relatively easy to get access. Plus, I also like poetry. Lambda Literary highlights that some lesbian poetry chapbooks are now available for viewing and downloading from the Lesbian Poetry Archive. Get the chapbooks here.
- Whether you read Fifty Shades of Grey, or you want to read something better than that novel, Good Vibrations blog has some additional suggestions.
- Book Riot asked its readers to give suggestions of good food writing books. They have collected the lists in this round-up post.
- The Food Politics blog has a couple of food biographies that look very interesting.
- The Manga Critic has a list of “7 Mouth-Watering Food Manga.” I already familiar with Oishinbo. The others I have yet to find and discover.
- In “Who Fills Out The Paperwork When Superman Drops a Train?” the Likely Books blog gives a list of “of comics featuring law enforcement or bureaucratic agencies that solve supercrime, with or without the help of superheroes and super powers.”
- Whether you like it or not, 50 Shades of Grey is a reading phenomenon. If you read it, and you want more books that are similar, or you want books that are better or other than 50 Shades of Grey, the ladies of Smart Bitches, Trashy Books have you covered with a book list that features “a selection of books that might appeal to readers who found 50 Shades erotic and compelling.” As a librarian, I always find read-a-like lists helpful, so I am adding it here for future reference. I may even be willing to try one or two of their suggestions.