A Curious Invitation: The Forty Greatest Parties in Fiction. Isn’t this such a great idea for a book? I read about it in this post on Design Sponge, and now I can’t stop thinking about it. For each of the parties chosen by the author, she provides a look at the venue, the hosts, the guest list and most interestingly for me, the menu. I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy; I feel inspired already.
The Breakfast Bible. If there’s one thing I love to read about it’s meals. And if I had to pick a favourite meal, one meal to rule them all, it would be breakfast. So it’d be fair to say that I’m pretty bloody keen to get my hands on this book. What I’m looking forward to the most is the fact that it’s not a straight recipe book. Its a collection of essays, information and insights all focusing intensely on the morning meal. What’s not to love?
A Change of Appetite. I am sooo interested in reading this book. I should preface this with the statement that, surprise surprise, I am no health nut. I am a strong believer in the old adage ‘everything in moderation’. But, although I have no intention of drinking an aloe vera smoothie or whatever, I still care about my diet. Diana Henry is an incredible cookery writer, and with this book she approaches the topic of eating ‘healthily’ from the perspective of a person who loves food. This book asks the question ‘what is healthy?’ and answers it with what look like delicious recipes. I can’t wait.
An Edible Atlas. Does the title alone not sell this book? It most definitely does for me. I travel on my stomach, so the idea of a gustatory guide to the world is basically my dream come true. It’s an ambitious concept, but the author, Mina Holland, is the acting editor of the Guardian Cook in the UK, so she definitely has the chops to pull it off. I also love the title; I feel a little nostalgic tug on my heartstrings at the mention of an Atlas. Remember Atlases?
Miss Dahl’s Voluptuous Delights There is something about this book. I have been putting off buying it for such a long time, thinking it would just end up on the pile of cookbooks which look beautiful, but only gather dust on the shelves. And yet, I can’t seem to forget about it. Since reading more of Sophie Dahl’s writing on her website, I think I have to have it. She has such a great sensibility and such a wide frame of reference. I’m intrigued.
Mast Brothers Chocolate Nothing compels me more than passionate people excelling in their work. And if the Mast Brothers are not an example of that, then I don’t know what is. The sub title for this book is ‘A Family Cookbook’ which I find so enticing; it promises a glimpse into the inner workings and motivations of a family of dedicated artisans. And the subject is CHOCOLATE. ‘Nuff said.
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream Desserts Jeni, Jeni, Jeni… You’re a genius. No other cookbook has become as indispensible to my kitchen so quickly as Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. If this second work, all about desserts that work perfectly with ice cream, is even a patch on the first one then I’m sure I’m going to love it. And judging by this preview video, yeah, it’s going to be awesome. I love you, Jeni.
Japanese Soul Cooking Soul cooking is really the only kind of cooking that I care about. I want my food to be meaningful, interesting, sometimes historical, and always, always delicious. So the idea of a cookbook all about Japanese soul food, the food that is homey and comforting and familiar in Japan, speaks to me loud and clear. Plus, the chapters are basically a laundry list of all my favourite foods; ramen, tonkatsu, gyoza, kara-age, soba. Oh baby.
Gourmet Rhapsody Even when I’m reading a novel, I want there to be plenty to eat. And this book looks like a veritable feast. Honestly, when reading reviews online I was overwhelmed by comment after comment that the book is ‘not as good as The Elegance of the Hedgehog’, which is another of author Muriel Barbery’s works. However, after peaking at an excerpt from the book, I can’t wait to read it. If nothing else, the language is beautiful. One of the negative reviews opined the fact that this novel is nothing more than ‘a hymn to food’. Well, sounds great to me.
Eat: The Little Book of Fast Food Nigel Slater’s books are the literary equivalent of a quilt, a mug of hot tea and a hug. But they are never shmaltzy, or lacking in wit and insight. They’re like that perfect friend who knows exactly how to skewer the latest issues of the day, but would never turn their acid tongue on you. And his cooking is so simple and enticing, it makes me thankful all over again for fresh produce and products. I actually cannot believe I don’t own this already.
BONUS BOOK: One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories. Comedy writers write the best books. I want to be friends with BJ Novak, please.
What are you looking forward to reading? Do you have any recommendations, or more info about any of these beauties? Tell meeeee!
SPEAKING OF COMEDY WRITERS, HAVE YOU READ BOSSYPANTS? SERIOUSLY MADE ME FALL IN LOVE WITH TINA FEY EVEN MORE.
I HAVE AND I LOVED IT AND I LOVE HER!
Great list! I haven’t heard of a few…I’ll have to look into them. I’m reading Julia Child’s ” My Life In France” right now and loving it!
Absoloutely love a change of appetite! It’s such a great book and the photography is beautiful!
I highly recommend it too!
My current favourites are Julia Reed, an ex editor for US Vogue and first rate gourmet (I know, a Vogue editor eats??!!). She lives in New Orleans and is more than happy to share her epic food adventures with us.
Secondly, if you adore southern food writing and food, then james villas is your man. i have read him for twenty five years going on now and he is, quite simply, the bomb. start off with ‘stalking the green fairy’ then proceed to his memoirs, ‘villas at table; and the other two. he travelled on the queen mary with salvador dali, breakfasted with tenessee williams and was the friend and colleague of james beard and craig clairborne.