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S.B.'s Reviews

Stefanie has been the cookbook buyer at Bookshop Santa Cruz for over 25 years and credits her love of good food (and good times) to being born in New Orleans. Her favorite thing in the world is to cook for family and friends.

Life is a Party by David Burtka

David Burtka might be best known as the husband of Neil Patrick Harris, but he is also a Cordon Bleu–trained chef and former caterer who throws killer parties. He clearly loves to cook and entertain (just take a look at his Instagram account!), but what’s even more apparent from this book is that he loves the joy that comes from bringing a group of people together. In Life Is a Party, he celebrates moments big and small—from New Year’s Eve to game night—with great menus, party themes, decorations, and inspiration. - S.B.

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Life Is a Party: Deliciously Doable Recipes to Make Every Day a Celebration Cover Image
ISBN: 9781538729892
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - April 16th, 2019

A Garden Can Be Anywhere by Lauri Kranz

This gorgeous book is a bounty of creativity and information on planting and maintaining a beautiful and productive edible garden. Lauri Kranz, founder of Edible Gardens LA, has a bit of magic about her, which is clear from the testimonials of her clients (celebrities among them) who give her credit for creating gardens that have changed their lives. Even as an experienced gardener myself, I must say that I fell under her spell while picking up great tips, advice, and inspiration. - S.B.

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Garden Can Be Anywhere: A Guide to Growing Bountiful, Beautiful, Edible Gardens Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419733192
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harry N. Abrams - February 26th, 2019

A Way to Garden by Margaret Roach

Twenty years after it was first published, this classic gardening guide has been updated. I have long loved Roach’s writing (which I first found in Martha Stewart Living) for the way she conveys so much knowledge and expertise in an approachable, encouraging, and personal way. Wise and funny, inspirational and practical, A Way to Garden is the perfect book to sit down and read for pleasure as well as put to good use in the garden. - S.B. 

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A Way to Garden: A Hands-On Primer for Every Season Cover Image
ISBN: 9781604698770
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Timber Press - April 30th, 2019

The AHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques by the American Horticultural Society

Inspirational books are great, but sometimes a step-by-step guide is needed to get tasks accomplished in the garden. Whether you need help with pruning, planting, watering, or controlling pests, the American Horticultural Society will show you the way with their latest book, The AHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques. This great collection of text, photographs, and illustrations covers everything from how to train a vine to how deep to plant potatoes. - S.B.

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The AHS Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques: A step-by-step guide to key skills for every gardener Cover Image
ISBN: 9781784725884
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mitchell Beazley - March 19th, 2019

Houses: Extraordinary Living by Phaidon Editors

The range of the homes in this book is simply stunning—from classically inspired dwellings made with traditional materials to modern angled masterpieces perched on cliffs. What is clear from this showcase of houses created since the early 20th century is that technology and innovation have allowed architects to push the boundaries of design and helped make their visions a reality. But what is present, always, is the profound interplay of each house with the environment in which it is built. - S.B.

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Houses: Extraordinary Living Cover Image
ISBN: 9780714878096
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Phaidon Press - May 8th, 2019

The Garden Chef by Phaidon Editors

This is an exciting look at over 35 gardens—from raised beds to roof gardens, urban community gardens to micro farms—of many of the world’s leading restaurants. Within its pages, chefs—including Alice Waters (Chez Panisse) and Magnus Nilsson (Fäviken)—share their growing methods (and recipes!) for the herbs, fruits, and vegetables that they nurture and maintain. For anyone who loves to both garden and cook, this book is pure inspiration. - S.B.

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The Garden Chef: Recipes and Stories from Plant to Plate Cover Image
By Phaidon Editors, Jeremy Fox (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780714878225
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Phaidon Press - May 1st, 2019

The Soul of America by Jon Meacham

I wish I could escape from this time of upheaval and massive discontent by reading books that are non-political or historical, but really, I find more solace by immersing myself in information. (It makes me think the bad guys aren’t getting away with it.) The Soul of America, which chronicles our nation’s struggles from revolutionary times to the current day, is right up my alley, while also offering a beacon of hope. “Gripping and inspiring…[Meacham] makes the resonant argument that America has faced division before—and not only survived it but thrived.” —Newsday - S.B.

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The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399589829
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - April 30th, 2019

Woman of Color by La Tonya Yvette

I have been reading (and loving) Brooklyn lifestyle blogger LaTonya Yvette for years and am so excited about this, her first book. In Woman of Color, Yvette beautifully blends memoir with essays on motherhood, love, beauty, grief, identity, and racism. Although her blend of powerful writing, fashion advice, and design inspiration could only come from her, the takeaways are for everyone. “Admire and celebrate other women,” she writes. LaTonya Yvette, it is easy to do so with you. - S.B.

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Woman of Color Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419732942
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harry N. Abrams - April 2nd, 2019

Icing on the Cake by Tessa Huff

Icing on the Cake is the perfect mix of charming design (love the curved corners!), the sweetest looking desserts, and delicious recipes. From Garden Cupcakes to Peanut Butter Eclairs to Caramel Apple Pear Pie, the baked goods are approachable enough to give them a try, but interesting enough to make them special. Huff’s first book, Layered, showcased her teaching skills, beautiful decorations, and creative flavor combinations, and her latest picks up right where she left off. - S.B.

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Icing on the Cake: Baking and Decorating Simple, Stunning Desserts at Home Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419734632
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harry N. Abrams - April 2nd, 2019

Doing Justice by Preet Bharara

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book by the former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, who oversaw cases involving terrorism, corruption, and organized crime (among others) and was famously fired by President Trump. Preet Bharara has written a fascinating, compelling, and surprisingly readable book. I was really taken in by the tales from his legal career (including tragic and triumphant cases) and by the insight into what prosecutors must consider when prosecuting and crime and recommending sentences. From the importance of a fair and open justice system to regrets in Bharara’s career, Doing Justice is a page-turner. - S.B.

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Doing Justice: A Prosecutor's Thoughts on Crime, Punishment, and the Rule of Law Cover Image
ISBN: 9780525521129
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - March 19th, 2019


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