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Kitchen Confidential Book Cover

Tasty Titles for Your Inner Chef

It's an exciting time for all self-proclaimed "foodies" - the James Beard Awards season has arrived! The late James Beard was a chef, teacher, and cookbook author who championed American cuisine and guided generations of professional chefs and food enthusiasts. His legacy lives on through an eponymous foundation established in 1985 at the behest of Julia Child.

Carsick by John Waters

Challenge Accepted: Read Harder 2017

Challenge 8: Read a travel memoir

A new year means new year resolutions and challenges. One reading challenge that I love to do is Book Riot’s 2017 Read Harder challenge. Instead of having people focus on a specific number of books, Read Harder challenges people to read different genres or authors that they may overlook. This year, there are 24 prompts for readers, and a complete list may be found here on the Book Riot Goodreads page.

How to Be a Victorian

So You Want to Be a Victorian?

Nonfiction Books on Life in Victorian Times

There's something about the Victorian era that so many people - myself included - find enchanting and idyllic. I feel like every time that old cocktail party question "If you had to live in a different time period, which would you choose?" comes up, several people always gush "Ohh, Victorian London, definitely." Full disclosure: I have for sure been one of those gushing people at times. But then I thought Ehhh, would I really want to?

Inside Out and Back Again

Strength in the Face of Adversity

Books to inspire fortitude in readers of all ages

Are you looking for ways to build your bravery? Are you trying to figure out what hardships people have overcome in the past? Take a stand with these books that focus on children and adults staying true to their values despite their challenging and unjust circumstances.   For Younger Children (Pre-K to 3rd Grade)

I'm Your Biggest Fan

Names! Names! Names!

Hollywood memoirs that dish

In her memoir Year of YesShonda Rhimes describes the night she sat in President Obama’s box during the Kennedy Center Honors:  “The whole evening feels a bit enchanted.  No matter how cynical the Beltway thinks it is or how world-weary politicians may seem, D.C.

Tao of Martha

If You Give a Blogger a Book Deal

They’ll Want a YouTube Channel

Whether it’s a writer of a food blog or the star of a YouTube Channel, books by Internet celebrities are here to stay. The wave of bloggers and YouTube celebrities turned writers has been going strong since the medium gained popularity in the early 2000’s. In many cases, these writers have challenged the odds to cultivate loyal, if sometimes niche, fan bases. In the end, the book still reigns supreme as these online personalities have gone on to write humor, how-to-guides, cookbooks, and even incredibly personal memoirs.

Furiously Happy

Adult Book Club

"Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things" by Jenny Lawson

Pick up Francis Gregory's Adult Book Club's January selection, Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson.

A Broken Hallelujah

Honoring the late Leonard Cohen

In Writing, Film, and Song

Two of the greatest experiences of my life involved seeing Leonard Cohen, the late great Canadian singer and poet, perform live. While his body has left us, his spirit lives on through his decades of writing and song. Here are some recommendations of books and films by and about him to help understand and commemorate his legacy.  

Disaster Artist cover

Funny Pop Culture Books

Beach season may be over, but the need for "beach reads" never goes away.  For me, a beach read is rarely a novel. My ideal relaxation book is usually light, funny, non-fiction and usually about some aspect of pop culture.  (I realize that this a very specific genre.)  I've picked some of my favorites below.  If you aren't in the mood for fiction the next time you go on vacation give one of these a try!

Whoosh

Bountiful Biographies

Atypical Biographies for Kids

Biographies often get a bad rap- especially among kids. They bring up memories of school assigned book reports and boring encyclopedia articles filled with dry facts. And one does have to search a little harder to find compelling fun stories about people who changed the world around them-- but they do exist! The following collection represent my favorite sampling of picture book biographies that are not only fun to read but also feature people (and maybe a bear or two) who don't often find themselves as the subjects of school reports.

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