Food & Cooking Book Reviews

CHILLED by Tom Jackson
Released: Sept. 22, 2015

"There's much to wonder at in Jackson's captivating book."
The lively history of refrigeration from British science writer Jackson (Mathematics: An Illustrated History of Numbers, 2012, etc.).Read full book review >
Escape from Dorkville by Dean Ammerman
Released: Aug. 10, 2015

"Zany fun in an exciting adventure."
It falls upon 14-year-old Wilkin Delgado and his partner in crime, tug of war champion Alice Jane Zelinski, to save the universe again in the latest installment of Ammerman's (Waiting for the Voo, 2014, etc.) adventures.Read full book review >

PIG TALES by Barry Estabrook
Released: May 4, 2015

"A thoroughly researched, deftly written piece of investigative journalism. Estabrook and his partner still eat bacon, but they are careful about the source of the pork."
Former Gourmet contributing editor Estabrook (Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed Our Most Alluring Fruit, 2011) presents a journalistic exposé of the pork industry with the same skill demonstrated in his exploration of the tomato industry.Read full book review >
MY ORGANIC LIFE by Nora Pouillon
Released: April 21, 2015

"An inspiring account and great fun to read."
In a sparkling memoir, the founder of Restaurant Nora tells of making her own journey into the food world. Read full book review >
PROOF by Adam Rogers
Released: June 3, 2014

"Rogers gives booze a thorough going over, complete with good cheer, highbrow humor and smarts."
From the action of the yeast to the blear of the hangover, via the witchery of fermentation, distillation and aging, Wired articles editor Rogers takes readers on a splendid tour of the booze-making process. Read full book review >

Released: May 13, 2014

"Solid, well-reported science in the Gary Taubes mold."
Journalist Teicholz combs the science, or lack thereof, to learn how the fats in the American diet grew horns and cloven hooves. Read full book review >
SOUS CHEF by Michael Gibney
Released: March 25, 2014

"Sumptuously entertaining fare."
An experienced sous chef and first-time author skillfully deconstructs a 24-hour work cycle of a sous chef in a New York kitchen. Read full book review >
THE MEAT RACKET by Christopher Leonard
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"An authoritative look at a ruthlessly efficient system."
An engrossing report on the industrialized American meat business. Read full book review >
THE WINE SAVANT by Michael Steinberger
Released: Dec. 3, 2013

"Educational, entertaining information on navigating the world of wines."
Informative, easily digested how-to guide to enjoying modern wines. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 14, 2013

"Goodyear's exploration of this engrossing and morally complex topic provides a solid footing for hearty conversations."
Venturing deep into the underground foodie culture, New Yorker contributor Goodyear (The Oracle of Hollywood Boulevard: Poems, 2013, etc.) plunges into the world of dedicated individuals who routinely skirt the boundaries imposed by common culinary practices and tastes. Read full book review >
CANDY by Samira Kawash
Released: Oct. 15, 2013

"Though the subject matter may be fluffy, the treatment is substantive and significant, representing an important contribution to the literature about what, and how, we eat in 21st-century America."
A history of the creation and consumption of candy in America. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 15, 2013

"An engaging, tradition-rich look at an often overlooked American cuisine—certainly to be of interest to foodies from all walks of life."
Delving deep into the culinary (and social) history of one of America's oldest cuisines: soul food. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
H.W. Brands
October 11, 2016

As noted historian H.W. Brands reveals in his new book The General vs. the President: MacArthur and Truman at the Brink of Nuclear War, at the height of the Korean War, President Harry S. Truman committed a gaffe that sent shock waves around the world. When asked by a reporter about the possible use of atomic weapons in response to China's entry into the war, Truman replied testily, "The military commander in the field will have charge of the use of the weapons, as he always has." This suggested that General Douglas MacArthur, the willful, fearless, and highly decorated commander of the American and U.N. forces, had his finger on the nuclear trigger. A correction quickly followed, but the damage was done; two visions for America's path forward were clearly in opposition, and one man would have to make way. Truman was one of the most unpopular presidents in American history. General MacArthur, by contrast, was incredibly popular, as untouchable as any officer has ever been in America. The contest of wills between these two titanic characters unfolds against the turbulent backdrop of a faraway war and terrors conjured at home by Joseph McCarthy. “An exciting, well-written comparison study of two American leaders at loggerheads during the Korean War crisis,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. View video >