Penguin

I’ve been reading Luisa’s blog, The Wednesday Chef, for years and am such a fan of her beautiful writing, her delicious recipes, and her gumption. Luisa started her blog in 2005 when she was trying to work her way through a mountain of clipped-out recipes from the New York Times, but long-since exceeded those parameters. As chronicled in her book, Luisa grew up shuttling between her parents in Boston and Berlin and always yearned for home. She found comfort and a sense of place in the kitchen. Settling into a seemingly perfect life in New York, she couldn’t shake the feeling that something was wrong, so she found the courage to make some huge decisions and turned her life upside down—finding the love of her life in the process. This is a warm, enchanting memoir, filled with Luisa’s favorite recipes from New York, Italy, and Berlin. I can’t recommend it highly enough!BONUS: Meet Luisa Weiss at Bookshop Santa Cruz on Thursday, September 27th at 7:00. You’ll be able to sample her recipes at this book talk and signing!

Reviewed by: 
S.B.
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My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story, with Recipes Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780670025381
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Viking Books - September 13th, 2012

Accolades abound for this new biography of the late David Foster Wallace (Infinite Jest), whom many consider the literary voice of a generation. Kirkus Reviews calls it, “A thorough, understated account of the life of the pioneering author and how his addictions and fiction intersected. A stellar biography of a complicated subject: Max's portrait skillfully unites Wallace’s external and internal lives.”

Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace Cover Image
$27.95
ISBN: 9780670025923
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Viking - August 30th, 2012

I loved this memoir of growing up (mostly) in Texas in quite the dysfunctional family. Mary describes her childhood with the humor and compulsion of poetic therapy but the grit and reality of sand in the mouth. Her story is compelling, especially when describing her relationship with her mother and their reversal of roles. Best for anyone delving into the biography genre!

Reviewed by: 
Tracy
The Liars' Club: A Memoir Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143035749
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - May 31st, 2005

Why does your second drink taste better than your first? Why do drug addicts continue to partake in their risky behavior? How do fast food restaurants keep us coming back? Neuroscientist David J. Linden answers these and more questions as he explains to the reader why we enjoy the things that we enjoy.

Reviewed by: 
Cesar
The Compass of Pleasure: How Our Brains Make Fatty Foods, Orgasm, Exercise, Marijuana, Generosity, Vodka, Learning, and Gambling Feel So Good Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143120759
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - April 24th, 2012

Could sanity in fact be a "handicap" in times of crisis? Ghaemi combines historical evidence with current psychiatric research to arrive at an interesting conclusion: certain types of "insanity" may actually be beneficial when navigating through difficult circumstances. A provocative assertion, and a new and refreshing perspective with which to view mental illness.

Reviewed by: 
Laura
A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143121336
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - June 26th, 2012

Have you got a little pirate in you? Does glittering treasure catch your eye? Do you long for freedom; endless horizon over an ever-changing sea? Or do you just like rum? Find out who and what the pirates really were, outside of Disney and Treasure Island. The personalities, politics, and passions are laid out here in an exciting epic foretelling the complications of our current world.

Pirates of Barbary: Corsairs, Conquests and Captivity in the Seventeenth-Century Mediterranean Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781594485442
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - September 6th, 2011

I am occasionally accused of recommending too many books set during WWII, and I’ve tried to respond by recommending only the best WWII fiction I’ve read. City of Women now ranks in my top 5. It is the story of an ordinary woman living in Berlin in the 1940s, and her utter transformation from a passive, dissatisfied wife and worker to an underground activist and secret agent. The stakes are high in this book—everyone is always being watched, and every carelessly chosen word is noted, often with fatal results. 
Reviewed by: 
Kat
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City of Women Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780425252963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - May 7th, 2013

Al-Khalil traces the origins of foundational scientific concepts throughout the Arabic world beginning centuries before the European Renaissance. Everything from the circulation system, to the heliocentric model of the solar system. How did the same discoveries made by the Europeans, years and centuries later, eclipse those of the Arabic world? Fascinating.
Reviewed by: 
Jocelyn
The House of Wisdom: How Arabic Science Saved Ancient Knowledge and Gave Us the Renaissance Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780143120568
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - March 27th, 2012

As a self-proclaimed logic junkie, I can’t recommend this book enough! It’s readable for anyone curious about puzzles, and does a thorough but fun job untangling riddles, paradoxes, and other mind-boggling curiosities. So when Monty Hall reveals a goat behind door #3, you know whether or not to switch.

Reviewed by: 
Andrea
The Puzzler's Dilemma: From the Lighthouse of Alexandria to Monty Hall, a Fresh Look at Classic Conundr Ums of Logic, Mathematics, and Life Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780399537295
Availability: Hard to Find - Contact Store for Availability
Published: Tarcherperigee - March 6th, 2012

Yes of course this book is funny, but it's also bursting with tales of a whole generation of comics and artists, not to mention Peg's own charming, raucous, and occasionally ridiculous history.

Reviewed by: 
Erin
Nerd Do Well: A Small Boy's Journey to Becoming a Big Kid Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9781592407194
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Avery Publishing Group - June 5th, 2012

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