Holiday Gift Books 2020: Food

“I was thirty-nine when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate.” So said Julia Child. It’s one of the joyous gourmande’s eminently quotable pronouncements collected in “People Who Love to Eat Are Always the Best People” (Knopf, 147 pages, $18.95), a delightful treat sure to be gobbled up by foodies on your gift list.

Most women, of course, start cooking much earlier. Women have long run home kitchens—and cooking schools. But until recently professional kitchens were largely the domain of men. This has been changing, in part thanks to Child, whose television stardom ushered in an age of food personalities, many of them women. And that’s led to a bounty of books about female chefs and food influencers.

“Women in the Kitchen”(Scribner, 305 pages, $28), by Anne Willan, the James Beard Award-winning writer and founder of La Varenne Cooking School, is an edifying survey of 12 women whose groundbreaking cookbooks span some 350 years. Ms. Willan enriches her social history with a few of each woman’s most tempting recipes.

Ms. Willan reaches back in time to some forgotten trailblazers, including Hannah Glasse, whose “The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy” (1747) featured a neither plain nor easy Yorkshire Christmas Pie, a precursor of Paul Prudhomme’s turducken. Glasse’s elaborate recipe—not included here—involved boning various birds (turkey, goose, chicken, partridge, squab) and stuffing one inside the other before encasing the lot in a sturdy piecrust.

Fannie Farmer’s name is still in circulation, as is her “Boston Cooking-School Cook Book” (later renamed for her), which has remained in print since 1896. We have Farmer, the Great Leveler, to thank for the innovation of leveling the contents of measuring cups with a knife. Irma Rombauer’s encyclopedic “The Joy of Cooking” has also endured. Less well known is its heartbreaking origin: Rombauer lost her husband to suicide following the Wall Street crash of 1929, and wrote her cookbook instead of seeking a job.

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15 Maine books for the outdoorsy person on your holiday gift list

The winter holidays are upon us, and it’s time to wrack our brains for gift ideas. This year, as we navigate a world with COVID-19, books may be a more welcome and appropriate gift than ever.

Books are small, so they’re easy to ship by mail. They can be selected from afar, and picked up curbside at your local bookstore. Plus, reading is one form of entertainment you can enjoy alone and doesn’t require you to leave your home — perfect for a pandemic.

If you need help finding a book for that outdoorsy person on your list, here are a few ideas, all by Maine authors.

“Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument” by Eric Hendrickson

Released earlier this year, this photo-filled book delves into the history and natural features of Maine’s new national monument. The author grew up in the Katahdin area and has spent countless hours exploring the Katahdin Woods and Waters to uncover what makes the land special.

“The Bog Walker’s Companion: A Guide to the Orono Bog Boardwalk,” edited by Jerry R. Longcore, James E. Bird and Robert Klose

For those who miss visiting the popular Orono Bog Boardwalk (which has been closed during the pandemic), this book is a way to experience it through the eyes of others. Plus, when it does open up, you’ll be armed with more knowledge about it when you visit. Published in January 2020 by the University of Maine Press, it’s a hardcover book with 166 pages and 20 color plates.

“Evergreens: A Collection of Maine Outdoor Stories” by John Holyoke

Written by the Bangor Daily News’ very own Outdoors editor, this collection of essays will make you smile, laugh and perhaps even shed a tear or two. Through humor-filled stories, Holyoke explores the Maine outdoors and runs into some truly entertaining characters along the way. This book was published by Maine-based Islandport Press just last fall.

“A Year in the Maine Woods” by Bernd Heinrich

A celebrated naturalist and author, Heinrich has published many books, but “A Year in the Maine Woods,” originally published in 1994, is a great introduction into his writing. Bernd’s most recent book, “White Feathers: The Nesting Lives of Tree Swallows,” published earlier this year, also takes place at his cabin in the western Maine woods.

“We Took to the Woods” by Louise Dickinson Rich

If looking for a Maine classic, this’ll do the trick. First published in 1942, “We Took to the Woods” is a true story about Rich living in the remote backcountry settlement of Middle Dam, in the Rangeley area, with her husband. This book graces many Maine bookshelves.

“Nine Mile Bridge: Three Years in the Maine Woods” by Helen Hamlin

Another Maine classic, “Nine Mile Bridge” is a memoir about living deep in the Maine wilderness in the 1930s — first as a teacher at a lumber camp, then as the wife of a game warden posted in a remote location. Born and raised in Aroostook County, Hamlin had a deep

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The Best Travel Books To Inspire Wanderlust

Travel looks a bit different these days and many folks are sticking closer to home, eschewing airplanes and far-off destinations. Even so, curiosity in other cultures, wild landscapes, or passions and hobbies across the globe hasn’t waned. Books have always created a window into an objectionably new worldview. Keep reading to discover top picks for titles that inspire wanderlust.

Women Adventurers and Globe-Trotters

Complicated and engaging, the women in Mia Kankimaki’s The Women I Think About at Night: Traveling the Paths of My Heroes are all explorers. Through each chapter, you’ll learn about women who went against the grain and set out on personal adventures to unapologetically live their lives with passion and fervor. You’ll read about a woman who ran a coffee plantation in Kenya; a travel writer who suffered from depression until she took the advice of a doctor to explore the high seas; a Buddhist nun who became the first white woman to enter Lhasa, a forbidden city in the mid 1920’s; an inventor who traveled around the world with just a handbag; and many more.

A Love Letter to Horses Around the World

Sarah Maslin Nir, a staff reporter for the New York Times, adores horses, their keepers, and the stories that are intertwined. Through her book, Horse Crazy: The Story of a Woman and a World in Love with an Animal, readers are taken on an insider’s adventure into the horse riding landscape across America (New York, California, Virginia, etc.). What’s more, is the deeper dive into Nir’s upbringing as she writes about the nannies who raised her, the accomplished and mature family she never really felt a part of (including a father who survived the Holocaust), and how horses helped her cope with a childhood full of loneliness.

Learn Survival Skills from an Expert

If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to navigate by the night sky, tell time by the sun, start a fire without a match, keep warm in an igloo, fashion a canoe, or feel confident exploring the nature around you or in far-flung destinations, then you’ll love reading Richard Wiese’s book, Born to Explore. The chapters in this book read like a survival guide, giving you tools and tips for safety, navigation, shelter, food, weather, and spending lots of time in the great outdoors. Drawing on science, mental reasoning, adaptability and interpersonal skills, you’ll be equipped with knowledge and outdoor abilities after reading.

From Guatemala to America

The New American, by Micheline Aharonian Marcom, is a novel that takes you inside the experience of an undocumented college student “dreamer” named Emilio who, after getting into a car accident in California, is deported to Guatemala, a country he has never known. Emilio makes it to the U.S.—Mexico border and has to contend with law enforcement and a cast of nefarious characters. The book takes into account real-life

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Picture books that inspire are the perfect gift for loved ones young and old | Local news

“They are captivating and will tug at your heartstrings,” a colleague and fellow picture book devotee says.

It doesn’t matter who the giftee is. Sharing a picture book creates a bridge of understanding. Sometimes words that you read years ago will still resonate today. Or new words. This picture book bridge closes spaces between young and old, can make you feel good, or motivate you to improve your life.

As a word person, I look for the written story. It’s often the colors and illustrations, though that create a treasure. I would describe some of the picture books I’ve gifted in the past as inspiring and calming.

“Beautiful Hands” by Kathryn Otoshi not only carries a message of hope, encouragement, and confidence, it is also filled with wildly colorful, painted handprint illustrations. Lovely and inspiring, it went to a friend who was stepping into a new position where many would look to her for leadership.

In “The Gift of Nothing,” cartoonist Patrick McDonnell works in simple line drawings in black and white with a dash of red. It tells a wonderful story of searching high and low for what’s absolutely perfect for someone who has everything. So just what is in the box tied with a red ribbon? No spoiler here, but it is a gift that is both eye opening and will make you catch a breath.

As the world spins in this crazy chaotic time, going who knows where, it’s nice to sit back and appreciate the “Here and Now” by Julia Denos. Despite everything, the world continues to move in many good ways. Take note of the small things, the affirmative things and embrace them. Now is a scary time for sure, but growth comes from pursuing what’s wonderful in the world. And the world is still pretty wonderful.

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Picture books that inspire are the perfect gift for loved ones young and old |

“They are captivating and will tug at your heartstrings,” a colleague and fellow picture book devotee says.

It doesn’t matter who the giftee is. Sharing a picture book creates a bridge of understanding. Sometimes words that you read years ago will still resonate today. Or new words. This picture book bridge closes spaces between young and old, can make you feel good, or motivate you to improve your life.

As a word person, I look for the written story. It’s often the colors and illustrations, though that create a treasure. I would describe some of the picture books I’ve gifted in the past as inspiring and calming.

“Beautiful Hands” by Kathryn Otoshi not only carries a message of hope, encouragement, and confidence, it is also filled with wildly colorful, painted handprint illustrations. Lovely and inspiring, it went to a friend who was stepping into a new position where many would look to her for leadership.

In “The Gift of Nothing,” cartoonist Patrick McDonnell works in simple line drawings in black and white with a dash of red. It tells a wonderful story of searching high and low for what’s absolutely perfect for someone who has everything. So just what is in the box tied with a red ribbon? No spoiler here, but it is a gift that is both eye opening and will make you catch a breath.

As the world spins in this crazy chaotic time, going who knows where, it’s nice to sit back and appreciate the “Here and Now” by Julia Denos. Despite everything, the world continues to move in many good ways. Take note of the small things, the affirmative things and embrace them. Now is a scary time for sure, but growth comes from pursuing what’s wonderful in the world. And the world is still pretty wonderful.

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Recycle your electronics, clothing, books in Kane County Saturday

Kane County will hold its last recycling event of the year from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, Nov. 14, behind the Kane County Circuit Clerk’s office, 540 S. Randall Road, St. Charles. They will be accepting electronics, clothes and textiles, and books. TVs and monitors cost $25 or $35. All other acceptable items are free to drop off. Same costs and payment method guidelines apply at events and at drop-offs.

A schedule of events for 2021 will be published online before the start of event season (April 2021).

        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        

 

In order to assure the health and safety of all, residents shall follow the below required guidelines. Workers may refuse service if a resident fails to comply with the below rules.

• Materials to be recycled must be in the hatchback area or trunk of the vehicle. Items placed in passenger seats or back seats will not be accepted.

• Residents will remain in the vehicle with windows up and the workers will unload for you.

• Residents will unlock/open the trunk from inside the vehicle to allow worker to unload.

• Residents must wear a mask. If you have to communicate with event workers or make an on-site payment, you must have your mask on.

• Clothes and textiles must be clean and neatly bagged, with the bags tied securely closed.


        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        

 

• All small loose electronics, cables, remotes, etc. must be bagged and tied closed.

• Please be patient with event staff and volunteers, as the line will be moving a bit slower than normal in order to assure an appropriate spacing between workers.

• If residents are not comfortable allowing workers to unload their recyclable materials from their car (the truck or hatchback area), then please do not attend events or utilize drop-offs.

Electronics and textile drop-off locations are currently open 5 days a week, 8 hours a day. Residents must follow these rules of use to protect employees and visitors to the sites: Batavia, 517 E. Fabyan Parkway, open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays; and West Dundee Public Works, 900 Angle Tarn, West Dundee, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.

The Naperville Household Hazardous Waste facility is open and residents can drop-off hazardous materials on weekends during open hours on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        

 

For information on the accepted items list, visit www.countyofkane.org/Recycling/Pages/electronics.aspx.

For book recycling, they will take books of any age, size or condition at the monthly events. Reusable books will be redistributed and all others (like old, worn, torn, mass produced paperbacks, encyclopedias) will be sent for paper recycling.

Because of the safety protocols, the logistics of conducting the large scale shredding events are prohibitive. Therefore, they will not offer shredding this year. Check with your bank to see if they offer shredding services for their clients, or search online for document shredding

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All In: Books for young women in athletics

Madam Vice President. It has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

That is glass shattering you heard on Saturday as people danced in the streets. Young women, and especially young women of color, can look at Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and realize that they can do hard things.

To get through the roller-coaster presidential election week, I digested two books. Both would be excellent gifts for young women and especially young women in athletics. Those young girls looking wide-eyed at what is happening right now in America are our future leaders.

The books — together with podcasts I recommend — also help soothe the soul, something we all need. So step away from the news and Twitter for a bit, and treat yourself to a good read or an uplifting listen. We exercised our right to vote. We deserve it.

“Wolfpack” by Abby Wambach

Team USA soccer star Abby Wambach’s “Wolfpack” is an adaptation of her No. 1 New York Times bestselling book for younger readers. It’s an easy-to-read collection and explanation of leadership qualities the Rochester native acquired and refined as she became the world’s greatest soccer player, winning a World Cup and Olympic golds.

The book is an extension of a commencement address Wambach gave at Barnard College in 2018.

Wambach breaks down her leadership rules by unveiling her own wolfpack. She shuns the  “Little Red Riding Hood” childhood fairy tale which teaches young girls to follow the rules.

Girls, Wambach writes, are not Little Red Riding Hoods. They are the wolves.

She breaks down each chapter with an old rule and a new rule.  “Chapter Six: Demand the Ball” resonates and is a timely reflection of the nation’s ability to elect a female vice president. It begins with a story about Wambach practicing as a young women’s national team member with her hero, Michelle Akers, called by many the greatest Team USA women’s soccer player of all time.

Akers was a veteran guest at the practice, and at first she played the good teammate — passing the ball around with everyone getting touches. But with minutes to go in the five-on-five drill and her team down several goals, Akers took over, demanding the ball from her younger teammates. “Give. Me. The. Ball,” she yelled impatiently. She won the game herself.

Old Rule: Play it safe. Pass the ball.

New Rule: Believe in yourself. Demand the ball.

Demand the promotion. Demand the raise. Demand equal pay. Demand to seek elective office. Demand to be vice president. Demand to be president.

Believe that you can do it. And then do it.

I recommend this book to young women and the original “Wolfpack” to adults. And for more nourishment for the soul, check out Wambach with Brené Brown on Brown’s amazing podcast, “Dare to Lead.”

Brown, by the way, has the 10th most-watched TED talk on “The Power of Vulnerability.” She’s a researcher and an amazing storyteller whose messages of hope resonate. She gives “Wolfpack” to her friends as

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Minister Celebrates Performing 17,000 Weddings with ‘Wedding PhD’ on Amazon Books | Arts-and-leisure

Phillip Waring felt slighted while attending a wedding ceremony as a child. Thrust into a setting that is understood and enjoyed by adults, Waring quickly decided that it was the adults’ fault for not explaining everything he was to experience before attending a wedding at ten years old. In a new suit ready for a celebration that included a buffet, dance band, and an enormous cake, he found himself immersed in elaborate liturgy and a rigid environment entirely unable to have the fun anticipated from listening to adults. That night he made up his mind that he would grow up wearing nice suits, speaking eloquent words and performing beautiful weddings without making children feel out of place or unimportant. His unconventional education had begun.

Waring’s education continued by working with turbulent churches and difficult hospitals right out of Bible college and graduate school. His clergy peers criticized him for cheerfully performing weddings outside of the church at resorts, golf clubs, and homes of people who did not even attend church. Leaving the ministry for a brief period, he continued performing occasional weddings until he was introduced to the Internet. From the web, his wedding ministry became known worldwide in the fast-growing vacation destination, Arizona. Marriages were performed from the rim of the Grand Canyon to the pitcher’s mound of the 2001 World Series-winning Arizona Diamondbacks in front of 38,000 fans and live on ESPN.

Wedding PhD chronicles some of Waring’s personal life, including a revelatory meeting with former President Ronald Reagan, along with stories and humorous anecdotes about some of the 17,000 weddings he performed for the famous and infamous. Wedding PhD also explains his experience inside the business of weddings and his thoughts about the future of marriage in American society. The short read reveals his motivation and philosophy that garnered his reputation as Arizona’s Favorite Wedding Officiant.

Waring’s first book, Signs of Arizona, was designated an Official Arizona Centennial Legacy Project by the Arizona Historical Advisory Commission in 2012. Wedding PhD is Available at Amazon Books and www.WeddingPhD.com.

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New & Noteworthy Visual Books, From Extraordinary Women to Van Gogh’s Letters

VINCENT VAN GOGH: A Life in Letters, edited by Nienke Bakker, Leo Jansen and Hans Luijten. (Thames & Hudson, $39.95.) Three curators at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam compile the artist’s correspondence to shed light on his creative process and personal life.

THE ART OF NASA: The Illustrations That Sold the Missions, by Piers Bizony. (Motorbooks, $50.) Blending a history of space exploration with a survey of illustration technology over six decades, these 200 large-format images from NASA detail such landmarks as the Space Shuttle, the I.S.S. and the mission to Mars.

THE PEOPLE: Nimiipuu, Nez Perce Tribe, by Hunter Barnes. (Reel Art, $39.95.) Barnes, a photographer, was welcomed into the close-knit Lapwai Idaho reservation from 2004 to 2008 to document its ways. These black-and-white portraits and other images capture lives at the intersection of tradition and modernity.

WINE AND THE WHITE HOUSE: A History, by Frederick J. Ryan Jr. (White House Historical Association, $55.) The Washington Post publisher tells a comprehensive story of the American presidents through the grapes and glasses they drank from.

EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN: Images of Courage, Endurance and Defiance, by Tom Stoddart. (ACC Art, $45.) With a foreword by Angelina Jolie, the photojournalist shows women in war zones from Bangladesh to Mozambique.

Even if we were not living in a divisive, pandemic-ridden timeline, the metaphor of bursting into flames when frustrated or angry is a relatable one. Kevin Wilson’s NOTHING TO SEE HERE crackles with dark humor and dysfunctional family dynamics as it tells the story of Lillian, who is living a life of squandered promise until she is asked by her old friend Madison to be the governess to her two, unloved stepchildren. When agitated, these children spontaneously combust (they are not harmed), and it is Lillian’s job to keep them calm and hidden, so that they do not disrupt the squeaky-clean image of their politically connected father’s life. As Lillian and the children bond, she transforms from depressed, reluctant caretaker to fierce protector of these “fire children,” and discovers that she needs them just as much as they need her. One of the few books I would reread, just to absorb everything I can.

—Deb Amlen, “Wordplay” crossword columnist
and senior editor

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How to Sell Digital Books at Physical Events

Digital books are a great way to get your content quickly into the hands of millions of readers. But what about selling digital books at physical events? You can tell people about your book and how great it is, but they can’t actually buy the book unless you have a kiosk set up for it or a mobile card reader to make them buy then and there. If you want a better approach to selling your digital books at physical events, then you’ll be happy to know that there is something you can do to improve your marketing.

The Sell

What are you selling? Digital books, of course. However, that’s information in a digital space and people can’t touch it (unlike physical books). So, how do you sell a digital product at a physical event that people can actually touch? It comes down to coupon codes. Some companies, such as Enthrill, are selling coupon codes at cheap prices that you can use however you want.

Here’s how it works. First, you buy the coupon codes. The prices are currently set $1.50 per code with a minimum purchase of 100 coupons. You can then upload your book to their servers and whoever inputs the code will get your book. You can also do this by making your own coupon codes and uploading books to your own website or server, which will cut down the price, but this approach requires some technical knowledge and a website under your complete control (so no free websites).

Regardless, you’ll see that even paying the $1.50 per coupon code can still yield some lucrative results.

Making a Product

Now that you have the coupon codes, what do you do with them? Do you write them down on notebook paper and hand them out? Do you write them on business cards? The best thing you can do is print them on small items that you can sell. This allows you to make your product more valuable while improving your selling ability.

For example, let’s say that you have a cookbook. You can sell a small bag of ingredients and place a tag on the bag with the coupon code. Or, you could sell spatulas, spoons or other kitchen tools and print the coupon code on them. Or, let’s say that your book is about weight loss. You can print the coupon code on pedometers, portion control plates, resistance bands or various other items. Just sell the item for $10 and you have a nice profit and a new reader. Even with the extra promotional item, you should be able to double your investment.

Simpler Approach

If getting a promotional item and printing codes on it is too hard, then don’t worry. There’s a much simpler approach that, while not as effective, can still make you a lot of money. Enthrill is willing to print the codes out on gift cards so that you can hand them out during your event. If you would prefer printing the codes …

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