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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.

The Potlikker Papers by John T. Edge

My favorite kind of summer read is an engrossing culinary book, and if it’s about Southern food, all the better. As director of the Southern Foodways Alliance, John T. Edge has credentials to write this “food history of the modern South,” but more than that, he is a terrific writer who cares about the ways that race has shaped what and how we eat. I am particularly interested in reading Edge’s take on how “[Southern] food and eating intertwine inextricably with politics and social history.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review.) - S.B.

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The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South Cover Image
ISBN: 9781594206559
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Press - May 16th, 2017

My Master Recipes by Patricia Wells

Patricia Wells’s cookbooks are always packed with outstanding recipes, and her latest is no exception. But My Master Recipes is even more: it is a primer on how to cook. Wells, who runs cooking schools in France, showcases her skills, teaching essential techniques like steaming, searing, braising, and baking. Wells is warm and personable and her recipes and instructions are so well tested that this book could almost come with a money-back guarantee that it will make you a better, more confident cook. My Master Recipes has earned starred reviews from Library Journal and Publishers Weekly, who calls it “a superb tutorial.” - S.B.

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My Master Recipes: 165 Recipes to Inspire Confidence in the Kitchen *With Dozens of Variations* Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062424822
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: William Morrow Cookbooks - March 7th, 2017

Tartine All Day by Elisabeth Prueitt

To say I’m excited about this cookbook is an understatement. I am a great admirer of Elisabeth Prueitt, cofounder of San Francisco’s acclaimed Tartine Bakery and Tartine Manufactory. While Tartine’s previous books focused on baking, here Prueitt shares recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. (Okay, yes, desserts as well.) I love so many things about Tartine All Day: the stellar introduction (and her homage to working women), the insight into what a seasoned professional likes to cook each day, and most especially the broad range of delicious recipes with influences from around the world. I’ll be cooking from this book for years to come. - S.B.

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Tartine All Day: Modern Recipes for the Home Cook [A Cookbook] Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399578823
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Lorena Jones Books - April 4th, 2017

Heirloom Wood by Max Bainbridge

Hand-carved housewares not only add function and beauty to a home; they also represent the time, skill, and dedication of the people who crafted them. If you have ever wanted to try making your own, Heirloom Wood is a terrific place to start. This beautiful guide is filled with step-by-step instructions for making simple projects like spoons, spatulas, bowls, and cutting boards from sustainable and reclaimed wood. The contemporary designs in this book don’t even require many tools, but the gorgeous wares can be used and passed down for generations to come. - S.B.

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Heirloom Wood: A Modern Guide to Carving Spoons, Bowls, Boards, and other Homewares Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419724763
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harry N. Abrams - March 28th, 2017

Letters to a Young Farmer edited by Martha Hodgkins

If I could live any other life, I have always imagined it would be as a farmer. Letters to a Young Farmer is doing nothing to dispel that dream, but at least it allows me to live vicariously through the dozens of writers, farmers, chefs, and activists who address the highs and lows of farming life. Many favorites—among them, Michael Pollan, Dan Barber, Mas Masumoto, and Barbara Kingsolver—share their tales, knowledge, and observations about food, farming, and sustainability. At a time when farmers are facing huge challenges, including climate change and big agribusiness, this book serves to advise and encourage young farmers and inspire anyone who cares about fresh, healthy, and affordable food. - S.B.

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Letters to a Young Farmer: On Food, Farming, and Our Future Cover Image
ISBN: 9781616895303
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Princeton Architectural Press - March 7th, 2017

Succulents by Robin Stockwell

Within minutes of opening Succulents, I was already writing down names of plants I want to pick up for my garden. (Luckily for us, author Robin Stockwell has his own nursery in Castroville, so I know where to stock up!) Stockwell believes that “if you present succulents well, you will show off their unique beauty to the fullest,” so it’s no wonder that his book is an ideal mix of information and inspiration. The first part of Succulents is devoted to garden design, and it’s packed with plant pairings for all sizes of spaces, from large ranches to small crevices. Chapters on projects (such as tabletop displays), favorite plants, and getting started follow. If you’re not already a fan of these beautiful, easy-care plants, you will be after reading Succulents. - S.B.

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Succulents: The Ultimate Guide to Choosing, Designing, and Growing 200 Easy Care Plants (Sunset) Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780848749477
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Sunset - January 31st, 2017

Harvest by Stefani Bittner & Alethea Harampolis

This beautiful book vastly expanded my repertoire of what I can do with plants from my garden. From Salt-Preserved Herbs to Calendula-Infused Essential Oil, from Lemon Bee Balm Tea to Gardener’s Salve, there are projects for mind, body, and soul. “Harvest tempts me with all the goodness that I can create from even the most common plants. The projects are fresh and unfussy [and] each is infused with love.” —Johanna Silver, Garden Editor of Sunset magazine - S.B.

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Harvest: Unexpected Projects Using 47 Extraordinary Garden Plants Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399578335
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Ten Speed Press - February 7th, 2017

Floret Farm's Cut Flower Garden by Erin Benzakein

Floret Farm’s Cut Flower Garden is quite possibly the most beautiful book on flowers I’ve ever seen. From bulbs to branches, blooms to foliage, author Erin Benzakein (who runs a small organic family farm in Washington) shares her flower growing, harvesting, and arranging tips in page after page of gorgeous photographs. Opening this book is like falling into a pile of blossoms. Wildly inspirational. - S.B.

Every Body Yoga by Jessamyn Stanley

Yoga teacher Jessamyn Stanley is a woman of color, a woman of size, and a woman who loves to swear. If you are one of the 250,000 people who follow her on social media, you already know how incredible she is—bold, beautiful, sensual, and hella flexible. Stanley has channeled all of this goodness and much more into Every Body Yoga, a how-to guide for beginners that shows that not only is yoga for every body type, but that what is important is how it makes you feel, not how you look in your yoga pants. - S.B.

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Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get On the Mat, Love Your Body. Cover Image
ISBN: 9780761193111
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Workman Publishing Company - April 4th, 2017

The Home Place by J. Drew Lanham

Lanham has written an unforgettable memoir about growing up in rural Edgefield County, South Carolina, a “rich refuge for wild things.” With gorgeous (and sometimes heartbreaking) prose, he describes the full-sensory experience of the natural world around him—the same land that his ancestors were forced to toil. “In me, there is the red of miry clay, the brown of spring floods, the gold of ripening tobacco. I am, in the deepest sense, colored.” As an African American ornithologist and wildlife ecology professor, Lanham not only searches for rare birds, but is one. His essays on identity and belonging are powerful, and his passion for the natural world is inspiring. Without an emotional connection to nature, how can we possibly be fully committed to saving it? - Stef

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The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair with Nature Cover Image
ISBN: 9781571313508
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Milkweed Editions - June 13th, 2017


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