Category Archives: Book Recommendations

Eat food

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Eighteen

Michael Pollan’s definitive compendium, Food Rules, is here brought to colorful life with the addition of Maira Kalman’s beloved illustrations.

This brilliant pairing is rooted in Pollan’s and Kalman’s shared appreciation for eating’s pleasures, and their understanding that eating doesn’t have to be so complicated. Written with the clarity, concision, and wit that is Michael Pollan’s trademark, this indispensable handbook lays out a set of straightforward, memorable rules for eating wisely. Kalman’s paintings remind us that there is delight in learning to eat well.

The hardcover Pollan-Kalman collaboration will be the Food Rules edition that families will pass down for posterity, sharing lessons for eating healthfully-and joyfully-for all their lives.

 

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…every human creature is constituted to be [a] profound secret and mystery to every other.

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Seventeen

As we near the 2012 bi-centenary of Dickens’s birth, this lovingly abridged and lavishly illustrated edition of Forster’s influential three-volume biography is the perfect way for fans to celebrate. Long out of print, it is now finally accessible to a new generation of Dickens enthusiasts, who will delight in the host of supplemental texts and images, including extracts from the author’s own work and from recent criticism. The rich selection of images ranges from original artwork to rare photographs and portraits of Dickens and his circle, along with specially commissioned pictures from the Charles Dickens Museum.

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Compost Cookies and Crack Pies

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Sixteen

The highly anticipated complement to the New York Times bestselling Momofuku cookbook, Momofuku Milk Bar reveals the recipes for the innovative, addictive cookies, pies, cakes, ice creams, and more from the wildly popular bakery.


Momofuku Milk Bar
finally shares the recipes for these now-legendary riffs on childhood flavors and down-home classics—all essentially derived from ten mother recipes—along with the compelling narrative of the unlikely beginnings of this quirky bakery’s success. It all started one day when Momofuku founder David Chang asked Christina to make a dessert for dinner that night. Just like that, the pastry program at Momofuku began, and Christina’s playful desserts helped the restaurants earn praise from the New York Times and the Michelin Guide and led to the opening of Milk Bar, which now draws fans from around the country and the world.

Who wants to be the best holiday party host ever, whose desserts will be lauded for the next 12 months?! I think you do.

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-in the daily circadian rhythms of sleep and waking-

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Fifteen

The Book of Symbols combines original and incisive essays about particular symbols with representative images from all parts of the world and all eras of history. The highly readable texts and almost 800 beautiful full-color images come together in a unique way to convey hidden dimensions of meaning. Each of the c. 350 essays examines a given symbol’s psychic background, and how it evokes psychic processes and dynamics. Etymological roots, the play of opposites, paradox and shadow, the ways in which diverse cultures have engaged a symbolic image—all these factors are taken into consideration.

Authored by writers from the fields of psychology, religion, art, literature and comparative myth, the essays flow into each other in ways that mirror the psyche’s unexpected convergences. There are no pat definitions of the kind
that tend to collapse a symbol; a still vital symbol remains partially unknown, compels our attention and unfolds in new meanings and manifestations over time. Rather than merely categorize, The Book of Symbols illuminates how to move from the visual experience of a symbolic image in art, religion, life, or dreams, to directly experiencing its personal and psychological resonance.

Perfect for those on your list who are:

writers, painters, teachers, life coaches, moms, grandmoms, questioners, answerers, thinkers, feelers, doers, believers, non-believers… Perfect.

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Why? And, ummm, how? But… why?

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Fourteen

More Interesting Than Your Teacher is an innovative take on learning. Stuart Wright believes that schools go about learning the wrong way, focusing too much on the details and confusing children. More Interesting Than Your Teacher sets to correct this and tackle tricky subjects in an accessible, bite- sized way that will help children (and adults) get their head around the information.

Why is it colder up at higher altitudes even though you are closer to the sun? And did you know that only 5% of the world’s surface is habitable? That Jackson Pollack’s painting No. 5 is one of the most expensive paintings ever sold? That one of Peru’s biggest exports is bird poo?

More Interesting Than Your Teacher has the answers to these questions and hundreds of others. With the facts presented in short, easy to understand language and accompanied by fun illustrations, this book can help children of all ages learn vital information without hours of study.

“…without hours of study”? If you ask me, I think children should be subjected to hours of study, but if that’s not going to happen, this little book is a perfect alternative. Also great for parents. I was asked yesterday, for example, why the moon is a different shape every night. Do I know the answer? Yes. Was I able to articulate it in a way that the child asking me would understand? No. I said something very much like this Google answer:  During each month, the Moon seems to change from a tiny sliver to a large bright ball. These shapes are the phases of the Moon. When there is a Full Moon, the Sun lights up the entire side of the Moon that faces Earth. When there is a New Moon, the unlit side of the Moon faces Earth. During a New Moon, you cannot see the Moon.   I think I’ll buy this book.

-Aida

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so you’ve ruined your life

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Thirteen

From thankless Thanksgiving turkeys and confusing Christmas conundrums, to less-than-happy Hanukkah horrors and New Year’s meltdowns, Wreck the Halls has an icing-smeared disaster for every occasion. With additional chapters on Black Friday, family communication, and navigating the murky waters of politically correct cake greetings (“Winter!”), Wreck the Halls combines Yates’s signature blend of wit and sarcasm with the most hilarious frosting fails this side of winter solstice. Find sweet relief from the holiday madness (not to mention plenty of laughs) with Wreck the Halls.

The perfect distraction for awkward family gatherings: you pull it out and all laugh together.

Also, the perfect attraction for comfortable family gatherings: you pull it out and all laugh together!


*Did you hear Lucia on NPR?*

Listen here.

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Mama, I will thrill you yet.

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Twelve

After his acclaimed and best-selling Finishing the Hat (named one of the New York Times 10 Best Books of 2010), Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat.

After his acclaimed and best-selling Finishing the Hat (named one of the New York Times 10 Best Books of 2010), Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat, giving us another remarkable glimpse into the brilliant mind of this living legend, and his life’s work.

Picking up where he left off in Finishing the Hat, Sondheim gives us all the lyrics, along with excluded songs and early drafts, of the Pulitzer Prize–winning Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Assassins and Passion. Here, too, is an in-depth look at the evolution of Wise Guys, which subsequently was transformed into Bounce and eventually became Road Show. Sondheim takes us through his contributions to both television and film, some of which may surprise you, and covers plenty of never-before-seen material from unproduced projects as well. There are abundant anecdotes about his many collaborations, and readers are treated to rare personal material in this volume, as Sondheim includes songs culled from commissions, parodies and personal special occasions over the years—such as a hilarious song for Leonard Bernstein’s seventieth birthday. As he did in the previous volume, Sondheim richly annotates his lyrics with invaluable advice on songwriting, discussions of theater history and the state of the industry today, and exacting dissections of his work, both the successes and the failures.

Filled with even more behind-the-scenes photographs and illustrations from Sondheim’s original manuscripts, Look, I Made a Hat is fascinating and essential reading for any fan of his work.

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It all started when someone left the window open…

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Eleven

An inspired collection of short stories by an all-star cast of best-selling storytellers based on the thought-provoking illustrations in Chris Van Allsburg’s The Mysteries of Harris Burdick.

For more than twenty-five years, the illustrations in the extraordinary Mysteries of Harris Burdick by Chris Van Allsburg have intrigued and entertained readers of all ages. Thousands of children have been inspired to weave their own stories to go with these enigmatic pictures. Now we’ve asked some of our very best storytellers to spin the tales. Enter The Chronicles of Harris Burdick to gather this incredible compendium of stories: mysterious, funny, creepy, poignant, these are tales you won’t soon forget.

This inspired collection of short stories features many remarkable, best-selling authors in the worlds of both adult and children’s literature: Sherman Alexie, M.T. Anderson, Kate DiCamillo, Cory Doctorow, Jules Feiffer, Stephen King, Tabitha King, Lois Lowry, Gregory Maguire, Walter Dean Myers, Linda Sue Park, Louis Sachar, Jon Scieszka, Lemony Snicket, and Chris Van Allsburg himself.

One of those rare gifts for children, which are wonderful when they receive them but absolutely magical when discovered in a chest thirty years later, now bearded and balding… and with children of their own.

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Got fur balls?

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Ten


Are your favorite sweaters covered with cat hair? Do you love to make quirky and one-of-a-kind crafting projects? If so, then it’s time to throw away your lint roller and curl up with your kitty! Crafting with Cat Hair shows readers how to transform stray clumps of fur into soft and adorable handicrafts. From kitty tote bags and finger puppets to fluffy cat toys, picture frames, and more, these projects are cat-friendly, eco-friendly, and require no special equipment or training. You can make most of these projects in under an hour—with a little help, of course, from your feline friends!

It’s hard to know what to say about this one. It mostly speaks for itself, so let me just assure you that we do seriously have this in stock and we’re not kidding.

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He let a feather float down through the air…

Going Home Books for the Holidays

Day Nine

In The Conference of the Birds Caldecott Honor-winning children’s book author and illustrator Peter Sís breathes new life into this foundational Sufi poem, revealing its profound lessons.

Sís’s deeply felt adaptation tells the story of an epic flight of birds in search of the true king, Simorgh. Drawn from all species, the band of birds is led by the hoopoe. He promises that the voyage to the mountain of Kaf, where Simorgh lives, will be perilous and many birds resist, afraid of what they might encounter. Others perish during the passage through the seven valleys: quest, love, understanding, friendship, unity, amazement, and death.

Those that continue reach the mountain to learn that Simorgh the king is, in fact, each of them and all of them. In this lyrical and richly illustrated story of love, faith, and the meaning of it all, Peter Sís shows the pain, and beauty, of the human journey.

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